Shillong, Feb 13: Meghalaya Deputy Chief Minister (Animal Husbandry & Veterinary), Prestone Tynsong inaugurated the Milk Collection Centre and Laboratory cum Office of Iatyllilang Multipurpose Cooperative Society at Myrkhan, Upper Shillong on Thursday.
Urban Affairs Minister, Hamletson Dohling, Myllliem MDC, R V Lyngdoh, Chairman of Meghalaya Farmers Empowerment Commission, K N Kumar, ADM East Khasi Hills, M Tongper, BDO of Mylliem Block, P T Passah, officials from AH & Veterinary were also present.
Tynsong in his speech said that the presence of cooperative milk collection centres will strengthen the dairy sector in Meghalaya.
He said that cattle, poultry and piggery farming have been a sustainable livelihood sector in Meghalaya since time immemorial and stressed the need to take this sector forward because it is one of the most important sectors that can tackle unemployment problem in the State and facilitate self employment.
Tynsong also said that the Meghalaya Milk Mission will help in achieving the goal of doubling the farmers’ income through promotion of milk business in the state.
Under the sanctioned project of Rs 220 crore through the National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC), the Dy Chief Minister said that the amount will be utilised for various training under dairy farm, chilling centre and purchase of milch animal.
He called upon cattle farmers to take the opportunity of the schemes and programmes available with the Central and State Government to enhance their economic livelihood and ensure milk sufficiency in the State.
Shri Hamletson Dohling in his speech said that cattle and dairy farming is one of the most valuable activities that can uplift the economy of the people and the State.
He said new employment opportunities could be generated through cooperatives and strengthens the farmers’ economic condition by augmenting their income and fast track the pace of development in the State. He hoped that the Iatyllilang Multipurpose Cooperative Society will continue to grow from strength to strength in the years to come.
Emphasizing on the importance of milk and its nutrients required for the holistic health of everyone especially children and pregnant women, K N Kumar emphasized the need to drink milk everyday in order to keep the body fit and healthy.
Stating that 27% of Meghalaya’s children are malnourished due to lack of a special protein present in milk, he said that such cooperative sectors are required to meet the demand of milk supply thereby keeping the children healthy.
Kumar said that the Meghalaya Milk Mission has been conceptualised to plug the demand-supply gap in the per capita milk availability. Stating that the per capita milk availability in Meghalaya is much lower than the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR’s) recommendation of milk consumption per person, he said that the Milk Mission will enable the state to substitute the import of milk with the state’s own production. He also urged the people to take the responsibility and create opportunity through dairy farming and help to increase the production of milk in the region and also improve the economic condition.
Others who spoke on the occasion include P T Passah, M Tongper and Chairman of Iatyllilang Multipurpose Cooperative Society, A Nongkynrih.