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Dairy firms witness fall in milk demand due to lockdown

01/04/2020

GCMMF, which sells dairy products under the Amul brand, expects demand for its milk to decline by 10-12 per cent as hotels and restaurants have closed after the nationwide lockdown, while procurement of milk from farmers has increased by 15 per cent. Mother Dairy and Parag Milk have also witnessed fall in demand in absence of institutional sales, but they hope that some of it could be compensated by rise in household consumption.

India is the leading milk producer in the world with an annual output of around 190 million tonne.

When contacted, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) MD R S Sodhi said the demand for milk had gone up to 155 lakh litre per day due to panic buying from an average 140 lakh litre of sales per day.

“Last week, our sales fell by 30 cent from the average 140 lakh litre per day. But again it has risen. Now the gap is 18 per cent and demand will further improve,” he told .

Sodhi said the cooperative expects demand to fall by 10-12 per cent due to closure of hotels, restaurants and cafeterias.

On the other hand, he said the procurement of milk from dairy farmers has increased 15 per cent with tea shops and sweet makers not buying milk from them and the surplus going to GCMMF.

”We have hired 2-3 plants to process these surplus milk and convert it into skimmed milk powder,” Sodhi said.

Asked about other dairy products, he said the demand for some items like butter milk, paneer and ghee has gone up while sales of ice cream, cream and cheese have fallen.

Sodhi said the demand will increase once the lockdown is lifted. He said sales improve in summers.

When contacted, Mother Dairy spokesperson said it is maintaining the average milk sales volume of 30 lakh litres/day in Delhi-NCR for last few days. “There has been some reduction in volumes of institutional sales due to the lockdown.”

Devendra Shah, Chairman, Parag Milk Foods, said, “Milk consumption has declined over the past month because of the closure of hotels, restaurants, and catering business”.

However, he hoped that sales would improve through online delivery platforms.

“Over the past month,domestic consumption of ghee, butter, paneer and cheese has increased as entire family is at home. The consumption of pouch milk has decreased due to closure of hotels, restaurants, catering and tea stalls,” Shah said.

Source:-Economic Times

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