Cownomics – How Cows Are Boosting The Economy Indian Economics
A cow is bred for two reasons. The first and major one is for milking. A cow starts milking after giving birth to the first calf. The lifespan of cow is about 20-25 years whereas it milks till 10 years of the age. This apparently shows that a cow becomes unproductive for farmers when it stops milking. It is then sold by farmer. After selling, it can be assumed that cow gets slaughtered as there is no more productivity coming out of it and it would only add to the cost on cow-keeper for feeding and taking care of the cow. Hence, there are two major revenue generation from the cows- Milk and milk based products, beef export. The cycle expands at country level and becomes the part of Indian economy and revenue generation. The major aspects regarding these revenues can be read in-depth below.
Milk production in India accounts for approximately 400-million-liter milk per day as per report by National Dairy Development Board (NDDB). It is the largest producer as well as the highest consumer of milk. However, it was never tapped for more products. It continued with the basic dairy products like milk, ghee and butter for years. However, the market is now being tapped by various new national as well as multi-national players seeing the market potential. The biggest Indian player Amul has around INR 31,000 crore of net worth (as per 2015-16 figures). This clearly sparked the idea of entering into the Indian dairy business in the eyes of many international players.
Milk production in India for last five years
Production (in Million Tones)
Per capita availability (grams/day)
Source: Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India
While, there is list of top ten Indian states that account for about 80% of the total milk production of India.
Highest milk producing states of India
Production (in Million Tones)
The world’s largest dairy products company, Groupe Lactalis SA, has chosen a national player Tirumala Milk which is based out of Hyderabad, India, for its operations in Indian dairy market. Also, about INR 900 crores is already been invested by the national private-equity players over last few years. Nestle, Danone and other players are making additions in their product line ups in this industry. The national players like Nandini and Mother Dairy are also trying to maximize profits out of the opportunity and thus expanding the operations at a fast pace to combat the entering competition in Indian market.
Introduction to value added dairy products
Dairy products no longer revolve only around the production and selling of milk and the basic products ghee and curd. There has been the entry of a lot of value added products in the dairy products. The overall list of dairy products till now includes (not limited to)-
Category (packaged brand)
Market size (INR crores)
Growth (% CAGR)
Source- Alvarez & Marsal
There is increased demand in value added products of milk than just raw milk in recent years. This may be because the Indian population find these products more attractive than mere milk. Consequently, the revenue from these products is higher than raw milk. Other reason can be the gap generated between the selling of milk and the introduction of these products after decades. These products offer a new range of milk products for Indian population. Whatever be the reason, the revenue figures for these modern dairy products for 2016 ended up at about INR 40,000 crores.
Figures of current Milk Market
The present per day milk production is 400 million tones. Out of which about 48 % of the produce is being kept for consumption by the producers. The rest 52% is what the dairy industry gets for revenue generation. Now, out of this 240-million-liter milk per day, 70 million liters is allotted to or consumed by the organized sector of milk which includes cooperatives like Amul, mother dairy and other private sector players. The rest which is about 170 liters, gets consumed by the unorganized sector which includes the local milkmen.
In terms of worth, the Indian milk economy is about INR 5 lakh. Wherein, the organized sector is worth INR 80,000 crore. The milk economy has a yearly growth rate of 15-16 percent.
The journey that starts from being Goddess, food giver, mother cow ends up to get cut through the flesh ad sold as beef for making money. This is quite disappointing. Cows have a life span of about 25 years. Out of these years, it produces milk for about 9-10 years. A non-milking cow is then sent for slaughter house to get slaughtered which is then sold as beef. The reason that cows start costing too much to the cow keeper when they stop milking, without any returns anymore, is in fact “insane”. How can we treat cows as a mere method of making money throughout their lives? Where are all the animal protection laws or even their right to live life?
Say no to beef
It is actually unhealthy to eat red meat. There are many reasons why you should say a “NO” to beef.
- Excess fat– Eating red meat is one of the easiest way to expand waistlines. Studies say a red meat eater is about nine times more exposed to gain weight.
- Infectious and unhealthy flesh– Animals in factory farms live in pathetic conditions throughout their milking period no matter whatever is the brand name attached on the red meat package. They even walk through and live in the surrounding full of their own feces as they are not freed to move for like 4-5 years till they are milking.
- A call for heart and joint failure– Reports say eating beef may prove to be your call for heart, arthritis, diabetes and various health conditions
- Aggressive climate change– Animal agriculture is extremely unhealthy for climate. It accounts for the production of 51% of the total greenhouse gas emissions.
- Grown out of artificial hormones– The cows are injected with loads of artificial hormones for their unnatural rapid growth, which are consequently left with low levels of naturally produced hormones in them. Scientific researches say eating artificial hormones causes health problems in the human who eat them.
You must spread awareness about these points to your contacts to save them from red meat dangers.
Uses of a non-milking cows
There are multiple benefits of cattle even when its non-milking. India has world’s second largest cattle population. As per the reports of NDDB, livestock population in India as of 2012 is 190 million.
This concept explains why cattle slaughtering is an extremely bad decision while we can make use of these millions of cattle when they are non-lactating. It includes back the traditional uses of cows other than producing milk. Uses of a non-milking cow are-
- Natural fertilizers– Cow dung as manure are still the best solution even to a non-fertile land. Cow urine can be used for preparing bio-pesticides.
- Creation of natural fuel- bio gas– With this much millions of cattle population, it is possible to create 18,240 million cubic meter of bio gas annually. This can be used as fuel for generating street lights, gas cylinders of all villages. Consuming fossil fuels for our power related needs is just degrading environment more.
You don’t really need to accept the cow as holy or a Goddess but there is just one question- “Being a human, can you kill the one who gave you food once?” Which religion allows this sin? A sin to murder the life giver and sell its flesh for money? Think about it.
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