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Sales beyond Gujarat shore up Amul's fortunes

Our Bureau

The co-operative is targeting to export milk products worth Rs 150 crore this fiscal.

Kolkata , Sept. 15

THE Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, better known by its Amul brandname, is likely to post a 30 per cent growth in sales this fiscal. The growth was primarily achieved through roll out of Amul fresh milk in markets beyond Gujarat.

Amul milk was recently launched in Lucknow and Kanpur. It will be introduced in Bhopal next month. To support its plans in the Uttar Pradesh market, GCMMF has acquired a three-lakh litre dairy in Kanpur through its group co-operative Benares Dairy Union. Lucknow and Kanpur markets together consume 15 lakh litres of milk a day, of which roughly 12 per cent are packaged.

A GCMMF source said the combined sales of all Amul products hadso far registered 30 per cent growth compared to that of the corresponding period of the previous year. "Hopefully, we will continue the trend till the end of this fiscal," he said. The federation had registered total sales of Rs 2,945 crore during the last fiscal.

"For the last two years our milk farmers are getting better returns which in turn are invested in acquiring more cattle ensuring more supplies of fresh milk to GCMMF and its allied co-operatives. Our pricing policy ensures that a farmer owning two heads of cattle can now earn Rs 3000 a month net of expenses on an average," the source said.

On allegations that Amul was largely dependent on supplies of fresh milk from Gujarat to feed its new markets across the country, the source said Gujarat milk was being sent to only Delhi and Mumbai and that too in quantities that were small compared to the total consumption in these two markets. Of the total sales of 11-lakh litres of fresh milk beyond Gujarat, no less than 60 per cent was sourced locally; the rest being procured from neighbouring markets, he said.

Amul recently added Pakistan and Afghanistan to its list of overseas markets. According to the source, both the markets, especially Pakistan, offer promising opportunities. The company was targeting Rs 150-crore of milk product exports this fiscal, up from Rs 115 crore in 2004-05. All exports are made under Amul brandname.

The sources said apart from Pakistan and Afghanistan, the company was exporting variants of Amul milk and other milk products to West Asia, the US, Africa and neighbouring countries, including Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

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