Collecting and Distributing Milk in India
Sustainable Economic Growth
Two hundred and fifty families are happy and thriving, after the establishment of milk distribution centres in five rural villages in India. In the past, due to erratic rainfall and drought conditions, families had to ration the feed they provide for their cattle causing low, poor quality milk yield and no income for part of the year.
In response to the need, CCFC, along with local partner SEDCO, implemented a project to enable women to augment family income by engaging in income-generating activities through the sale of milk from their cattle. The project reached women in 12 villages who were already selling milk to their neighbours, to increase their sales quite significantly. The women now sell their milk in greater quantities to one of the distribution centres, which in turn, supply the Milk Producers Cooperative in Tamil Nadu on a daily basis.
The women also received “Basic Business Skills” training, as well as training on “Cattle Management and Livestock Development”. This training empowered each woman to confidently manage every aspect of her home-based business. They are now able to adequately feed their livestock which results in an improved milk quantity and higher milk yield all year.
Because of the implementation of this project, each woman has the opportunity to belong to one of 14 self-help groups within their surrounding villages, where they can find camaraderie and support among their peers. Within these groups, education sessions on various topics are addressed, such as gender biases. One positive outcome observed, is an improvement in gender equality by parents in terms of the quantity of milk consumed by both their sons and daughters.