Dairying is a vital part of the global food system, providing economic, nutritional and social benefits to a large proportion of the world’s population. Up to one billion people in the world earn their livelihood through dairy farming.

India is the world’s largest milk producer and accounts for 17% of the total milk production of the world. The Indian dairy sector is the largest contributor to the agriculture Gross Domestic Product (GDP). In terms of output, milk is now the single largest agricultural commodity in India. Diary sector contributes 17% of the country’s total expenditure on food. The milk production is growing at the rate of 7% by volume and 10% by value annually. Currently, around 46 per cent of the milk is consumed in the form of liquid milk, 47 per cent of traditional dairy products and 7per cent as Western dairy products.

The dairy industry in India is currently estimated to be about 130 million tons and is expected to grow at 4-5% per annum. The projected value of the industry is about Rs 500,000 crore, which includes Rs 160,000 crore from liquid milk, Rs 45,000 crore from ghee, Rs 50,000 crore from Khoa / chana / paneer, Rs 10,000 crore from milk powder, Rs 300 crore from table butter, Rs 8,000 crore from cheese / edible casein and the balance from other products.

The organized sector process an estimated 30% of the total milk output in India and within the 30 per cent overall share of organized dairies, the major 20 per cent is accounted for by the private sector. The cooperatives and government dairies will handle 10 per cent which will be lower than that of the organized private sector.