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* USAID research to boost Sri Lanka's dairy sector
Fri, Apr 23, 2010, 10:45 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Apr 23, Colombo: The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has conducted a study of Sri Lanka's dairy sector aiming to help small dairy farmers improve their businesses.

The findings of the study had shown that there is a strong competition among dairy processing companies that is helping to expand milk collection routes from rural areas.

The increased demand in certain regions is leading to greater development and investment opportunities for the country's dairy farmers, a press release issued by the United States Embassy in Colombo said.

The study, which helped to identify the areas for dairy market improvements and the obstacles that need to be addressed, finds that dairy yield can substantially be increased with a concerted effort from the public and private sector.

USAID is supporting the Sri Lankan government and private sector efforts to implement a concept called "Dairy Villages". The government is assisting farmers to improve the health and breeding of cows within their village area and the commercial milk processing industry is investing in the necessary equipment and structures to collect and market milk from those villages.

USAID is supporting these efforts by providing equipment and training to "Dairy Villages" to help farmers collect and chill milk until it can be collected by an interested dairy processor.

Concurrently, USAID encourages and supports Dairy Processors to invest in new collection routes that would reach more dairy farmers. USAID has partnered with a private company to increase milk production.

The USAID study says there has been substantial progress in the dairy sector and small farmers in Sri Lanka's former conflict zones are benefitting.

The complete report on the USAID's dairy sector study is available at www.core.lk


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