Pakistan ranked fourth in milk production

From KHALID BUTT, Lahore
Jan 30 - Feb 05, 2006

Marketing and technology experts at the one-day International Dairy and Beverage Conference 2006 held in Lahore recently were unanimous on one count that the Pakistani dairy sector has the entire requisite potential to be exploited. The experts who presented their findings about the trends in other markets, notably in European, American and Far Eastern ones, were of the view that the consumption trends in Pakistan were far encouraging. What was needed was a scientific development of the sector.

The first speaker on the occasion, Magnus Oscarsson, Managing Director of DeLaval, talked at length about the company he represented. He shared with the speakers the history of company, which started operations in 1878, and now its operations include milking, herd handling, breeding of milking animal, milk collection and a whole range of services related to the dairy sector development. He also spoke at length about the projected increase in the milk production in different regions and placed the Asian and African market growth at 20 per cent and that of Chinese at 50 per cent. He put the projections for Europe at 8 per cent, United States at 4 per cent and South America at 10 per cent. About the Pakistani dairy sector, he put the Pakistani production of milk at fourth in world - estimates about 28 million tons from approximately 8 million animals.

He listed out the processes, which need to be taken care of, and argued that milk was in fact a hidden treasure that can be optimally exploited. Talking in the traditional Pakistani context of keeping cattle for social security, milk, load work and other host of activities, he argued that with the development of the sector in Pakistan, the dairy resource for an average Pakistani farmer could well be a financial treasure "cash cow". He also shared with the participants his model for a cow farm housing 150 to 200 cows, complete with every conceivable infrastructure for the milking and animal maintenance job. He also told about similar working facilities in various points in Saudi Arabia where about 15,000 cows were milked three times a day and there were about 520 milking points all over. He also talked about similar experiences in Kenya and China.

Ms Bozena Malgram from TetraPak talked at length about the new processing technologies and the product development aspect of the dairy sector. She talked at length about the processes involved in the product development, especially making the product UHT process compliant. She argued that if the processes are managed in a correct manner, an organization could save up to 60 per cent in terms of costs. She also talked about the aseptic dosing system, which she argued could increase the shelf life of the product. She also talked in detail about the turbo tube concept in use in the industry. She told that the packaging technology in use by the Tetrapak was also being developed for vegetable and a whole range of product packing called Recart technology.

Mr John Jose also from Tetrapak shared with the audience his experiences in Philippines, where the company experimented with various packaging sizes and in the process was able to cater to a wide spectrum of customers and consumers. He told the gathering that through an intelligent marketing and packaging strategy developed in the target country, the brand name was able to present to its customers about 26 packages spread over 17 sizes. He also talked about creative marketing strategies like coloring the straws of the cold drinks or juices in accordance with the fruit in question as well as adding flavor.

Mr Claes Nermark from Nerklas Consultants based in Sweden talked about the global dairy and beverage trends. He explained the global scenario and told the audience that out of the estimated 5200 billion liters of beverage consumption, about 103 billion accounted for milk consumption, 730 accounted for packaged beverages and 390 billion accounted for hot beverages. Talking about Pakistan, he said that it has the highest milk consumption trends accounting for almost 184 liters per capita consumption with the production on average standing at 29.5 billion liters. He also talked about the global consumption patterns and argued how product and brand managers were specifically targeting a particular segment of consumers. About the beverage sector he told that the chilled nectar market was estimated to be 36 billion-liter. About the future outlook of the dairy sector, he opined that there would be few dairy farmers, but larger dairies, with milk consumption picking up in the developing economies but going down in developed economies.

Mr Michael Gamper presented a briefing about Supply Chain Management. He talked about the practical problems faced by the retail chains like the difficulties faced by the consumers in not getting the product due to bad supply management. Speaking at length about the issues he stressed for a well developed supply chain right from farm to market.

Mr Stephan Petroschka, General Manager DOEHLER based in United Arab Emirates also spoke on the occasion and shared his experiences in the Gulf states with respect to beverage and dairy sector and its development.

An exhibition of TetraPak and DeLaval about select machinery as well as a catalogue exhibition followed up the presentations. Earlier, the Managing Director TetraPak Pakistan Par Soderlund welcomed the participants to the conference.