Guwahati: One sleepy cold morning, a group of farmers from Amlighat village at Jagiroad in central Assam’s Morigaon district, decided to form a co-operative society to wipe out middlemen in the milk trade.
The milk producers’ co-operative society, entitled Sitajakhala Dugdha Utpadak Samabai Samiti Ltd, which was started way back in 1958 with just 17 farmers, has now over 1,000 members.
Nandalal Upadhyay, a farmer belonging to a Nepali community, took the initiative to form the society to usher in a white revolution in Assam.
The milk and other products of the society, which has completed 75 years of its existence, have found markets in Guwahati, Kamrup, Morigaon and Nagaon districts of Assam.
As of now, the society has two plants, one for milk and the other for curd besides 11 milk collection centres.
Sitajakhala had a total plant capacity of 18000 liters per day but as of now operates at 12000 literes per day.
It collects milk from almost 800 plus farmers from 110 blocks.
Sitajhakhala is working with farmers to increase the milk production capacity of cows by facilitating them semen of better breed of cows and also sex-sorted semen for artificial insemination so that only female calves are being delivered by cows.
It has also planned to set up silage (green fodder that is packed to conserve the nutritional content of fodders all year round).
The society provides free vaccination to cows registered under them.
Additionally, they are planning to provide financial assistance to farmers for maize cultivation and establishing mineral mixture plants.
They have also been contributing to the social cause by supporting the Sitajakhala Higher Secondary School by donating an amount of 0.15 paisa per litre, said Hrishikesh Acharya, an office-bearer of the society.