The last few decades have seen the Indian livestock sector emerging as one of the fastest growing sub-sectors of agriculture, Radha Mohan Singh said while delivering the first Convocation address of Lala Lajpat Rai University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, in Hisar today.
However, he added, “the poor, both as producers and consumers, have been largely by-passed by the benefits of this growth.”
The Minister said that both central and state governments have shown the will to reshape livestock sector policies and programmes, so as to promote a more inclusive form of growth and tap into the poverty reduction potential of livestock sector development. India has world’s largest animal wealth.
He said that the Government of Haryana has recently passed the Haryana Gauvansh Sanrakshan and Gausamvardhan Act 20, 2015 in which it is stated that the government shall establish laboratories for differentiation of beef from that of the meat of other species of animals, testing and identification of various constituents of milk and milk products and testing and differentiation of A1 and A2 milk for providing incentives for wholesome production of milk and milk products.
“I am delighted to know that LUVAS has already taken the lead role in differentiating cow meat from buffalo meat besides testing milk and milk products, “ the Minister said.
India is the largest producer of milk in the world. India produces 13.1 percent of the total milk produced in the world. Per capita milk availability is 252g per day lower than world average of 265g. India stands 5th in egg production, 18th in broiler. The growth rate for poultry sector is 8-10 percent p.a. The demand for milk and milk products is projected to increase to 142 million tonnes, consumption of eggs is expected to increase to more than 81 billion, 10.9 million tonnes of meat and 11 million tonnes of fish by 2020-21.
The milk production in Haryana in 2014-15 has touched 79.01 lacs million tonnes making per capita availability of 805 gm second highest in India. But, the livestock sector faces many challenges like low productivity, inadequate feed and fodder availability, prevalence of animal diseases, climate change, degradation of natural resources, knowledge gap, inadequate infrastructure for marketing and processing of value added products, issues relating to bio-security and sustainability. In order to address these major challenges, the Central Government has framed National Livestock Policy in the year 2013.
“The primary focus of the policy is to increase livestock productivity and production in a sustainable manner, while protecting the environment, preserving animal bio-diversity, ensuring bio-security and farmers livelihood. The National Livestock Policy would facilitate better inter-state coordination in control of animal diseases many of which are zoonotic, regulating export and import of livestock and livestock products, enhancing availability of feed and fodder, bio-security and conservation of indigenous breed, which are essential for development of livestock sector,” Singh said.
The commercialization of technologies for their faster transfer to the stake-holders and also to realize return on investments has become part of technology transfer pursuits. Singh was told that that LUVAS has also established “Business Planning & Development Unit and IPR Cell” for patenting and licensing of technologies which will help not only the farmers of Haryana but of other states as well.
The Minister emphasised that inter-institutional networking and partnering with rural people is of immense value to take the benefits of policy and developmental programmes to people.