THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Starting Thursday, milk sold by the Kerala Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, better known as Milma, will become costlier by Rs 4 per litre.
Post-revision, the 500 ml blue packet (toned homogenised milk) would cost Rs 23 instead of the earlier Rs 21, while the 500 ml yellow packet (doubled-toned milk) and the 500 ml light blue packet (non-homogenised, toned milk) would cost Rs 22.
“The revised prices will come into effect from September 19. However, Milma will continue selling packets bearing the old prices till the stocks get exhausted,” said Milma chairman P A Balan Master. Milma had last hiked milk prices in February, 2017.
Balan said the Rs 4 per litre hike was insufficient to support dairy farmers as production costs had increased. “We hope local bodies give incentives to promote dairy farming,” he said. He said of the Rs 4 hike per litre, dairy farmers would get Rs 3.35. “Milma agents will get Rs 0.32 additional commission which would translate to a total of Rs 1 per packet. Over 21,000 agents will benefit from the hike,” Balan said.
He said private milk dairies had started the unhealthy practice of increasing agent’s commission at the cost of quality of milk. “We hope to retain agents with better commission,” Balan said.Milma has also set aside 1 paise from each litre sold for recycling the plastic packets. A sum of 3 paise per litre sold has been set aside for cattle feed intervention fund to improve the functions of its fodder manufacturing factories.
Fortified milk sale from Sept 23
Milma will launch the statewide sale of milk fortified with vitamins A and D from September 23. The project will be implemented in association with the National Dairy Development Board and Tata Trust. It was launched on a pilot basis recently. “Milk products are also delivered at home now through online platforms across the state. The service was launched a few months ago in Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam and has a subscriber base of over 5,000 customers,” Balan said. He said Milma will take steps to ensure the milk supplied from its dairies is of high quality. “A state referral laboratory will be set up at our dairy unit at Edappally in Kochi for Rs 8crore,” he said.