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Breeders and suppliers of hybrid and native cows

Dairy farm can be successful only when cattle are of premium quality! Sakthi Dairy Farm located at Uppidamangalam, Karur District, Tamil Nadu is into cattle trade since 1978. They are recognized for their quality and service. They breed different varieties of cows and buffaloes at their own farm. Mr. Pichaimuthu, MD shares the details on cattle trade. Excerpts:

Sakthi Dairy Farm was started by my parents. It spreads in 80 acres. Cattle trade is our main business and we also supply milk to some of the dairy processing companies. In addition, we provide all sorts of help to farmers for setting up commercial dairy farm with the shed construction plan, dairy management details and documents required for availing the bank loan. We share all the information on dairy farming with the farmers as what we know and what we practice at our farm.

We raise and sell Holstein Friesian, Jersey, Heifers, Kangayam and Sindhi cow breeds. In buffalo, we only deal in local Tamil Nadu breed. Hybrid cows namely Holstein Friesian cross breed, Jersey and Heifers, are apt for commercial dairy farm as their milking capacity per cycle is good but the indigenous cows like Gir, Kangayam and Sindhi gives very healthy milk, mostly preferred for feeding the infants. We supply the breed as required by the clients. On an average we sell 50 cows per week.

Cows are sold as per the lactation cycle as asked by the customers. It has three variations namely first lactation (2.5 years old), second lactation (3.5 years old) and third lactation (more than 3.5 years age). Seldom buyers ask for bull. It is 1:10::bull:cow ratio.

Primarily we are selling cows in entire South India. We do get enquiries from other states of the country but we are not able to access it due to high temperature that makes it difficult for the cows to travel long distance. Similarly we get export orders too but due to delivery constraints we restrict our export orders to Sri Lanka and Gulf countries. Outside India we give FOB till Tuticorian port.

Price per cattle depends on many factors like breed, age, size, lactation period, quantity and so on. In one order we take order quantity as 2, 3, 6, 9, 20 cows. It is as per our transportation facility. Transportation cost is to be paid extra by the buyers. It is Rs.8/km for small vehicle and Rs.15/km for big vehicle.

Every single order is processed with complete documentation such as transport certificate, medical certificate, invoice and NOC. We are extremely particular about the documentation as we believe in transparency in our system and it also gives us no-bribe clearance at the check post. Before the travel cows are well vaccinated and given warm water as a preventive measure from all air and water borne infections. In the transport vehicle adequate fodder is always maintained so that in the transit the cattle do not have any problems. If the journey is too long and tedious then after a continuous travel of few hours rest of 2-3 hours is given to the cattle. They are left on the ground for some time and then boarded in the vehicle again.

We take complete responsibility of the cattle supplied by us. In case of non-performance we make the replacement at our own cost. As an additional feature we provide guidance to our buyers on general dairy operations and managing the cows. In my opinion anyone considering starting a commercial dairy farm must start with 15 hybrid cows and should have minimum half acre farmland (it is exclusive of fodder growing area for cows).

In time to come we want to carry on our established operations. We do not plan for expansion as we want to stick to our quality!

(As told to Shweta Dhanuka)