ASIA – The new information exchange and development board, Asia Dairy Network, has outlined its methods to sustain dairy sector progression after aggregate Asian consumption gains over the last ten years have exceeded twice the global average.The Network, formally launched on November 29 2012, has acknowledged the difficulties that face future Asian milk, with supply chain issues, improving producer bargaining power, private sector investment and sustainable production named as challenging areas.
Asia Dairy network aims to promote the industry, facilitate in the sharing of knowledge and experiences and monitor the effects of policy changes and farming through regular meetings to ensure growth is sustained.
Currently small holders account for over 80 per cent of milk produced in asia. Small scale traders making a living from the dairy value chain has also been reported to be in the millions. The FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation) has estimated that every 100 litres of milk produced locally, up to five jobs are created in collection, processing and distribution roles which indicates the potential economic and social impact of further progression in the sector.
A strong tradition of dairy farming exists in south asia but further east the area has seen recent growth after considerable private sector investment has developed processing and distribution facilities.
The Asia Dairy Network recognise that milk production is a constantly evolving industry with fluctuating consumption demands. Meeting these challenges and environmental, welfare and public health concerns, the Asia Dairy Network has said, is vital for the success of Asian agriculture.
- Improving productivity along the cow-to-consumer dairy food chain and at farm level Enhancing returns from milk production by improving access to input services and enhancing raw milk quality.
- Improving the organisation of smallholder milk producers to improve their bargaining power and reduce risks
- Encouraging private sector investment in dairying along the post-harvest value chain
- Maximising smallholder earnings from dairying in a manner that minimizes harm to soil health and contribution to water and atmospheric pollution
- Understanding, more closely, the contribution of Asian dairy animals in global greenhouse gas emissions and climate change and identification and implementation of incentive based mitigation measures
- Engaging, strategically and pro-actively, with other global and regional dairy players and promoting interests of Asian dairy producers and consumers
At the same time, the region also has a rich diversity of experiences and models to address these challenges. The Asia Dairy Network hopes to capitalize on this knowledge in support of smallholder dairy development in Asia by accelerating information exchange, sharing of experiences, collaboration in technology application and development programs, capacity building, and monitoring and assessment of progress and impacts through regular meetings.
Source: The Dairy Site