Dairy visitors tour facilities

By Country News

A visiting group of Indian dairy delegates grilled managers of dairy industries during a tour of the Goulburn Valley, the north-east and western Victoria last week.

The group of 25 was hosted by Goulburn Ovens Institute of TAFE.

Last Thursday they spent all day in the Goulburn Valley, visiting the Girgarre ACM factory, a herd-development company and an artificial-breeding business.

Ajay K Srivastava from the Indian National Dairy Development Board said they were interested in co-operative organisations, feeding practices, animal health, breeding, milk testing, artificial breeding and quality management.

He pointed out that India is the world’s largest producer of milk, producing 176millionmetrictonnes annually, but not the biggest exporter.

The Indian industry is characterised by smaller herds and businesses.

At the ACM factory the delegates were interested in organic milk production, how the organic nature was credentialled, differences in cell counts, and the farm systems used to produce the milk.

The National Dairy Development Board sends delegates from across India and the group includes representatives from dairy co-operatives, dairy manufacturers and National Dairy Development Board extension officers.

GOTAFE was chosen to deliver the study tour because of its ability to draw on industry expertise from across the full supply chain of the dairy industry.

The tour included visits to AgriBio at LaTrobe University’s Bundoora site, several dairy farms, dairy manufacturing plants and several lectures from GOTAFE staff and industry specialists on a range of topics, including co-operative structures in Australia and dairy herd health.

Demonstrations of vocational education and potential to provide practical education to existing workers was also showcased.