The President of India, Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, was formally presented a copy of Dairy India (Edition Six) on June 27, 2007. At a specially arranged meeting in his Rashtrapati Bhawan office, Dr Kalam had a half-an-hour long interaction with the Dairy India team and associates, including the publisher, Sharad Gupta, and editorial advisors, Dr R.S. Khanna and Dev Gupta.
The Dairy India team was pleasantly surprised to discover that Dr Kalam had already scanned through the 864-page publication, an advance copy of which had been made available to him before the 'formal' presentation. The President had, in fact, made notes on some of the topics dealt with in the publication.
The one area on which Dr Kalam expressed particular interest was Clean Milk Production. He felt that now that India has emerged as the world's No. 1 milk producer, the dairy industry should focus mainly on improving quality of milk right from the farm level up to the final processing stage. If we are to compete in the world market, our industry has to meet global standards, which means investing in breed improvement, feeding and nutrition and health care, thus ensuring low bacterial count right through the supply chain.
The President also dwelt upon the role of dairying as a powerful employment generation and poverty alleviation tool while also providing nutrition in the form of milk and milk products. He pointed out that milk was the only 'crop' that generated cash on a daily basis to the farmer. Besides providing liquidity for meeting his family's daily expenditure, dairying was also an effective insurance to the farmer in years when the rains had failed and there was no income from crop farming.
Dr Kalam was happy to note that the dairy cooperatives in Bihar were a roaring success and could show the way ahead for addressing regional imbalances. The importance of traditional milk products also needs to be recognized. Other livestock species including goat and sheep must be given prominence, Dr Kalam pointed out.
Founded and conceived with the encouragement and support of Dr V. Kurien, the doyen of Indian dairying, by the late P.R. Gupta, a developmental journalist and passionate chronicler of the industry, Dairy India has evolved into one of the world’s most prestigious publications on dairying.
An invaluable Databank-cum-Management Guide-cum-Directory-cum-Who's Who, Dairy India (Edition Six) contains over 120 in-depth articles, 260 statistical tables and charts and reference details of over 7,000 organizations and specialists in the dairy industry. A new section, Dairy Asia, has been introduced in the latest edition to cover the fast growing Asian dairy scene.
The entire team of Dairy India feel honoured by the thoughtful consideration for our industry by President Kalam.