THRISSUR:With a scientific and methodic approach marking the project from day one, the ‘Aadu Gramam’ (goat village) scheme initiated as a part of ‘Susthira Puthukkad’ envisioned by C Ravindranath MLA has earned laurels as a model for entrepreneurial development plans.
The scheme was initiated in 2009 with 5 goats for each of the 100 families in Pookkode and Palakunnu in Alagappa Nagar, which, according to recent reports, has expanded at least 11 fold into 55 goats per family.
The families were divided into 20 units of 5 families each and a startup sum of Rs 1,00,000, divided equally into Rs 20,000 per family, was distributed among them. Of this Rs 50,000 was in the form of subsidy and the other half in the form of a bank loan. Five goats were given to each family, with a mandate that at least 2 goats be pregnant.
“The kids from the two goats, after they are raised for six months, could be sold, thus reassuring that the first instalment of the bank loan could be paid back after six months,” said Mattathur panchayat secretary Jyothish Kumar.
Every month, the residents would hold a meeting with veterinarians and ensure that the goats remain healthy. The results, according to officials, were staggering. After two years of commencement, the residents had recorded an income of at least Rs 2 lakh from the goats and their fleet size per home has increased to 55 in 2015. “An average kid records a growth of 70 grams/ day. With proper upkeep, the ‘Aadu Gramam’ residents were able to bring the figure up to 120 g/ day,” said Jyothish. Now, an average farmer receives upto Rs 52,000 per annum from the sale of kids, Rs 48,000 from the sale of goat urine to Oushadhi, who procures it at a rate of Rs 10 per Litre and at least Rs 10,000 from the sale of packaged goat excreta as fertiliser. According to farmers, goat milk was mainly used for domestic consumption rather than sales.