Productivity for Sustainable Milk Production
India is already the world’s largest fresh dairy producer, but it will need to increase its annual milk production by 56 million tons in the next 10 years to meet domestic demand.
India already has 90 million dairy cows and buffalo, but their milk productivity is very low. Dairy cows produce an average of 14,000 hectograms per animal and buffalo produce 19,000 hectograms. By contrast, the U.S. has just 9.2 million dairy cows, but each of them produces an average of 101,000 hectograms per animal.
Simply adding more animals to meet India’s milk demand is environmentally, economically and socially unsustainable. Increasing the milk productivity of the animals through improved genetics, feed and animal care practices would help meet demand while lowering the climate impact of dairy production in a more sustainable way.