What is Lean Period and Flush Period for Milk Supply? (Download PDF)


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With the ‘flush season’ in milk production commencing, milk supply to Goa has been restored giving a respite to local consumers. Earlier in December, Goa had faced an acute shortage of milk, due to a prolonged lean season of milk.

Chart of milk production in India 2017

Chart of Milk Production in India 2017

Chart of milk production in India 2017

What Are Lean Periods and Flush Periods for Milk Production?

  • April to November is a lean season for milk production and December to March is called flush season.
  • In 2017, the lean season continued up to December. It resulted in a shortage of about 6, 000 litres of milk on an average per day.

Challenges Due to Lean and Flush Periods

  • Wherever milk production is seasonal, as in India, the marketing of milk should match the procurement of milk.

  • India has inadequate milk processing and conservation facilities

  • During the flush season marketing of milk is a problem, while in the lean season there is not enough milk to be marketed.

  • The commodity assistance under Operation Flood recombined imported dairy commodities during the summer months to help the Operation Flood capture commanding share of the market sustained during the winter months with local procurement ensuring that the imported commodities were not used against the local milk producers.

  • The seasonal imbalances in supply and demand for milk and milk products were therefore met with the commodity assistance under the programme and have now been substituted with local milk reconstitution from locally produced milk powder.

  • Before Operation Flood, India used to manufacture about 10, 000 tons of milk powder per year. The current annual production of all kinds of milk powder in the country is now of the order of 200, 000 tons.

Central Assistance

  • Rs. 10, 881 crore of financial assistance is being provided under Dairy Processing Infrastructure Fund (DIDF)

  • Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries (DADF) has issued an advisory to States to include milk in the Mid-day Meal Scheme, Anganwadi Scheme etc.

  • Department of Food and Public Distribution were requested to consider inclusion of milk in the Public Distribution system (PDS) system.

  • The cooperatives have also been advised to set a target 2 % share in the World Trade by 2020.

Achievements of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries

  • The milk procurement by the cooperatives during November 2017 has recorded an increase of 20.4 % in milk procurement as compared to the last year.

  • The Procurement Price of milk during November 2017 is also higher by 4.7 % when compared to last year.

  • The stock of Skimmed Milk Powder (SMP) is at 1, 16, 946 MT due to higher conversion and expected to be upto 2, 00, 000 MT by the end of March 2018.

  • Domestic price of Skimmed Milk Powder (SMP) and Ghee is higher by about 9 % and 19 % respectively during November’2017 when compared to last year.

Targets of ADF

  • A target of 255 MMT of Milk Production by 2022 has been set by the Department to double the farmers’ income in line with achieving the Prime Minister’s vision of doubling the farmers’ income.

  • The total share of milk procurement by cooperatives is to be increased from existing 10 % to 20 % of milk production by 2022. This will ensure better returns to dairy farmers.

- Published/Last Modified on: February 15, 2018

Policy/Governance, Geography

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