47th Annual General Body Meeting held on 20 July, 2021

REPORT OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

47th Annual General Body Meeting held on 20 July, 2021.

CHAIRMAN'S SPEECH

Gentlemen,

The Genesis

Seventy-five years ago, who could have imagined that a cooperative formed by small and marginal farmers of just two tiny villages located in Gujarat, would one day develop into India’s largest food organisations with business worth US$ 7.3 billion per annum? Even the most foresighted could not have predicted that a fledgling enterprise, which started off by collecting just 250 litres of milk per day in 1946, would one day become a dairy giant handling 25 million litres of milk on a daily basis; and be ranked as the eighth largest dairy organisation in the entire world. Unimaginable as it was, an alliance of small farmers, residing in rural Gujarat, have been able to create an organisation, that today, successfully deploys cutting edge manufacturing technology and innovation across 87 large scale dairy plants.

Seventy-five years ago, who could have predicted, that milk would one day become the instrument of development, that would transform the most vulnerable sections of society – landless labourers and rural women – into successful entrepreneurs, decorated with most coveted honours, accolades and awards from around the world.

The Transformation

How did a milk deficit country, which was dependent on the import of dairy commodities from Europe till the 1950s, become the largest milk producing nation in the world, self-sufficient in fulfilling the nutritional requirements of its own citizens, in terms of milk and dairy products? What did it take for rural women living in remote areas of India, to gain financial independence by earning a remunerative livelihood and thus a status of economic equality within the family; and to overcome centuries of social barriers and severe scarcity of resources?

The answer to all these intriguing questions are embedded in a magical four letter word: AMUL. The word stands for a dairy cooperative movement that triggered a socio-economic revolution across rural India and also became one of the most loved brands in India, evoking almost blind faith and earning the trust of millions.

The Impact

As Amul Dairy, Anand, celebrates 75 years of its amazing journey in 2021, we would like to retrace the story of a cooperative that made India dairy independent; and in the process uplifted the lives of dairy farmers by connecting them directly to Indian consumers; and empowered women farmers. And all this, while at the same time bringing good health and great taste to all Indians, every morning.

The birth of the Amul cooperative movement in 1946, our rise in subsequent decades and the replication of the Amul model through Operation Flood, completely transformed the fortunes of the Indian dairy sector. The spirit of cooperation that emerged from Amul, engulfed the entire nation, galvanizing our farmers into breaking the shackles of oppression and making India, the largest milk producing nation in the world. By leveraging on the collective strength of millions of small and marginal farmers, dairy cooperatives led by Amul catapulted India to a position of prominence on the global dairy map with 21% share of global milk production. As a nation, we are now completely self-sufficient in the dairy sector, since our dairy farmers produce enough milk to fulfil 100% demand for milk and dairy products in our country. Our dairy farmers have ensured food security for our country in one of the most critical dimensions – milk and dairy products.

The Starting Point

The genesis of Amul was an offshoot of India’s national struggle for Independence. The organisation took roots in 1946, when our freedom movement was at its peak. The farmers of Kaira district of Gujarat, went on strike to protest against economic exploitation by private milk contractors, who enjoyed a monopoly over milk-procurement in the region. The colonial government, of what was then known as Bombay Province, granted this monopoly to the contractors. Led by the great farmer leader Shri Tribhuvandas Patel, the farmers sought inspiration and advice from eminent national leaders such as Shri Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and Shri Morarji Desai. It was Shri Sardar Patel who advised the farmers to form their own cooperative and to go on strike, if the British colonial government refused to register their cooperative. The strike succeeded in its objectives as monopolistic restrictions on procurement were removed. The colonial government condescendingly agreed to let the farmers form their cooperative, under the false premise that “illiterate farmers – who could not read or write English – would not be able to run their cooperative beyond two days”. The fact that this cooperative, which started with two small village level societies, could one day become a US$ 7.3 billion organisation was beyond their wildest imagination.

The Great Leap

During his visit to Amul to inaugurate the Cattle Feed Plant in 1964, the then Prime Minister of India, Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri chose to spend a night as a guest of a humble farmer in a village near Anand. His voyage of discovery and subsequent discussions with Dr. Verghese Kurien led him to the firm belief that the Amul-Pattern could be replicated and established in other states, outside Gujarat. At his behest, Dr. Kurien established the National Dairy Development Board, with a mandate to establish the dairy cooperatives like Amul in other states of India. This programme known as Operation Flood (which went on to be the world’s largest dairy development programme), ushered in the White Revolution in our country, propelling our nation into its current position of eminence, on the world dairy scenario. Today, the dairy cooperative movement inspired by Amul, covers village level dairy cooperative societies in 190,516 villages across India; with 16.9 million farmer families as members, handling 50 million litres of milk every day. These are constituents of nearly 245 district level milk producer’s cooperative union in India, each with at least one dairy plant, with the mandate of processing and adding value to milk collected by village level dairy cooperatives. At the apex level, state-level cooperative marketing federations were created in 28 states of India, each with its own brand with a clearly defined mandate of handling marketing, sales and distribution on behalf of district cooperative unions. The Amul cooperative movement eliminated middlemen in the value chain, thereby protecting Indian farmers from any form of economic exploitation. This ensured that farmers retained control over the entire value chain and that as much as 80% of the consumer’s rupee flowed back to the farmers; which is still the case. In the 1950s, milk production in India was only 17 million MTs and we were heavily dependent on the import of dairy products to fulfil domestic demand. Till the 1970s, the per capita milk availability in India was only 110 gm per day, much less than the minimum level of 275 gm per person per day, prescribed by World Health Organization (WHO) for optimum nutrition. Thanks largely to Operation Flood inspired by the Amul Model, milk production in India has now reached 198.4 million MTs. Since 1998, India has been the largest milk producing nation in the entire world. Despite the rapid increase in population over the last 75 years, we have also succeeded in enhancing per capita milk consumption to the current level of 407 gm per day. This factor has partly contributed towards increasing life-expectancy of Indians from 32 years in the 1940s to 69.3 years in 2021.

The Father of the White Revolution

The year 2021 marks another major milestone in our history, as along with the 75th anniversary of the Amul cooperative movement, we are also celebrating the birth centenary of our legendary founder-leader, Dr. Verghese Kurien. Born on 26th November 1921, in Calicut, Kerala, Dr. Kurien arrived in Anand on Friday, 13th May 1949, a town where he found his life’s calling and where he ended up spending the rest of his life – another 63 years. He was deeply moved by the efforts of farmers of Kaira district in Gujarat, who were struggling to keep their fledgling cooperative alive. Their leader, the great patriot and visionary, Shri Tribhuvandas Patel, had the foresight to recognise that the young Verghese Kurien had both, compassion and competence, to not only help their cooperative survive but also enable it to scale unprecedented heights. Shri Tribhuvandas motivated Dr. Kurien to stay on and help the farmers; and this led to a chain of historical events that unfolded at Anand, creating the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), and Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation Limited (Amul Federation, as we know it today). Popularly known as the ‘Milkman of India’, Dr. Kurien has been also hailed as the Father of ‘White Revolution’; doyen of dairy cooperative movement in India; and an institution-builder par excellence who ushered in a socio-economic revolution among rural farmers. It was his mission in life to change the fortunes of millions of underprivileged and less fortunate amongst his own fellow countrymen, in turn, transforming the destiny of his motherland. For the six decades that Dr. Kurien led the Amul cooperative movement, he built a strong foundation that went a long way towards ensuring longevity and success of Amul. If the brand has achieved the status that it has today, it is because of our staunch belief in the values of integrity, honesty, courage, dedication, commitment to farmers and to consumers, as well as commitment towards excellence, which Dr. Verghese Kurien instilled in the organisation. If millions of consumers across India and indeed across the world, have immense trust and faith in brand Amul, it is only because of the far sighted visionary leadership of Dr. Kurien. He ensured that everything in Amul should reflect innovation and excellence. He would settle for nothing except the best: best quality of milk, best equipment and machinery, best technology, best advertising and marketing professionals, best talent in terms of manpower, and best practices in key business processes. A true genius, Dr. Kurien shaped Amul into one of India’s strongest brands through innovative branding, advertising and marketing initiatives. While he spent his entire life working for the interests of the farmers, he always kept the interests of consumers in mind. He ensured that the core identity of brand Amul was value for money – highest quality at the most reasonable prices. With immense foresight, he created a Central Marketing Organisation for all dairy cooperatives in Gujarat, so that they could combine their strengths to market their products under a common umbrella brand – Amul. The Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (Amul Federation) was formed in 1973 as the apex marketing organisation for all dairy cooperatives within Gujarat state. Dr. Kurien remained the Chairman of the Amul Federation since its inception, right until 2006. Even thereafter, his benign presence in Anand continued to be a great source of comfort, guidance, courage and inspiration to all of us.

The Values

Leveraging on the strong foundation built by Dr. Kurien, the Amul Federation is today, the largest food organisation in India, currently, with a group turnover of US$ 7.3 billion in 2020-21. The Federation handles approximately 30 million litres of milk on a peak operating day. The Amul Federation includes 3.6 million farmer families, spread cross 18,565 village level dairy cooperative societies; and 18 district level Milk Producer Co-operative Unions, in Gujarat. The Federation has 87 dairy manufacturing plants with a total milk handling capacity of 39 million litres per day. It also outsources milk from dairy cooperatives in 13 other states of India; and some of our Member Unions have also set up village level dairy cooperative societies in other states such as West Bengal, Maharashtra, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh (UP). At Amul, we have twin operating philosophies: (a) Value for Many: Ensuring maximum remuneration to our farmers for the milk poured by them. Our farmer-members have the assurance that their cooperative will take every drop of milk they wish to give, that too, at the maximum possible price. Not only that, almost 80% of the consumer’s rupee will flow back to the farmers, quite unlike countries like US or even Europe, where farmers get between 35% and 40% of consumer’s dollar; and (b) Value for Money: This is our promise to Indian consumers – Highest quality of milk and milk products, at the most fair and reasonable prices. Amul has succeeded in gaining the trust and faith of Indian consumers, because we delivered what we promised – consistently. Another lesson that we learnt from Dr. Kurien is that consistency in communication over a long period of time is a must, if we want brand identity to be firmly ingrained in the perceptual mind-space of consumers. Since the launch of brand Amul in 1956, we have ensured consistency in core brand communication. Our highly popular Amul topical campaign is one of our most visible dimensions of consistency in brand communication. One of the key challenges faced by an organisation which is celebrating its 75th anniversary is that every few years, there is a new generation of customers joining the mainstream economy. Their behaviour, preferences and lifestyle choices may differ significantly from their parents and grandparents. We strive to ensure that our brand is able to connect with every new generation of consumers. We had to evolve continuously, to remain relevant and useful to society. We had to anticipate technological changes and societal trends. Over the years, we have worked on transforming our product portfolio, by anticipating evolving consumer preferences. Through a series of marketing initiatives in digital and conventional media, we have been striving to enhance our youth connect. Innovation has always been integrated within the DNA of Amul. Our product innovations and also innovative brand communication campaigns have always been appreciated by consumers. We have taken giant technological leaps ahead in leveraging on information technology and automation across our entire value chain. In the year of Dr. Verghese Kurien’s birth centenary, I recollect his immortal quote which has inspired generations of leaders and professionals, associated with the Amul cooperative movement:

“We have traversed a path that few have dared to. We are continuing on a path that still fewer have the courage to follow. We must pursue a path that even fewer can dream to pursue. Yet, we must, because we hold in trust the aims and aspirations of millions of our countrymen.” – Dr. Verghese Kurien

I now present to you, our Federation’s Annual Report and the Audited Accounts for the year 2020-2021.

 

REVIEW OF OPERATIONS

Milk Procurement

During FY 2020-21 milk procurement by member unions of the Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd. (Amul Federation) averaged 246.09 lakh kilograms (24.6 million kg) per day; representing a growth of 14% over an average of 215.96 lakh kilograms (21.59 million kg) per day achieved during 2019-20. The highest procurement was recorded during February 2021 at 295 lakh kilograms (29.5 million kg) per day. Over the last 11 years our milk procurement has increased at a phenomenal rate of 171%, as above. This creditable growth was a result of the high milk procurement price – which has increased by 140% during this period – paid to our farmer-members. The highly remunerative price helped us retain farmers’ interest in milk production; and better returns from dairying have motivated them to enhance their investments in increasing milk production. Our initiative in promoting the concept of commercial, scientific, cooperative dairy farming also helps retain the next generation of dairy farmers in the business.

Sales

During the COVID pandemic of 2020-21, our team rose admirably to the challenge of ensuring that consumers had access to their favourite Amul products, despite restrictions on movement and significant shifts in their purchase and consumption behaviour. Since out-of-home consumption in hotels, restaurants, cafes and catering segments was significantly impacted during the pandemic, we focused our attention on enhancing in-home consumption of our products. We redesigned our marketing campaigns to educate and inform consumers about using the wide range of products; and to check out our restaurant-style dishes at home. These campaigns encouraged consumers to try their hand at cooking tasty and healthy dishes using Amul products. Impressive growth in the sales of our consumer products within the household segment helped us overcome the impact on demand from the institutional segment; and enabled us to register a turnover of INR 39,248 crore (INR 392.48 billion), a growth of 2% over the previous year. Since consumers were spending more time at home, their media consumption including TV, digital and OTT increased significantly. This was a wonderful opportunity to further enhance our bonding and connect with Indian consumers. Through our innovative digital campaign on Facebook Live, we created the world’s largest live recipe show providing a platform for chefs to showcase their recipes using Amul products to consumers. At the end of financial year, this campaign completed 2,460 sessions across 400 consecutive days featuring more than 3,000 chefs. Our association with the telecast of iconic epic shows such as Ramayan and Mahabharat during the lockdown period of 2020, paid rich dividends in terms of advertising and brand connect. Since a sound immunity system was of prime concern for consumers during this period, we also launched a range of new products and variants based on this insight, such as Haldi Doodh, Tulsi Doodh, Ginger Doodh, Ashwagandha Doodh and many more. In order to reach out to people who were spending more time at home, due to the lockdown, we swiftly remodelled our last mile supply chain in multiple ways. We effectively leveraged all online and home delivery platforms, including e-commerce, to make our wide range of products available on the doorsteps of consumers. Through our Amul Cart app, we provided retailers an opportunity to place online orders with our distributors. This proved to be very useful during times when there were strict restrictions on movement. During 2020-21, despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on institutional demand and out-of-home consumption, we managed to achieve impressive value growth in several consumer product categories. We achieved 20% value growth for Amul UHT Milk; 21% value growth for the Amul Cheese range; 22.5% value growth for Amul Ghee consumer packs; 17% value growth in Amulya dairy whitener consumer packs; and multi-fold growth in Amul T-Special brand of dairy whitener, which was recently introduced in the North Eastern part of India, and other specific markets. Amul Paneer grew by 47% in value terms and Amul Chocolates registered an impressive 79% value growth in 2020-21.

Distribution Network

In 2020-21 during the first phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, last mile management has been very challenging. Channel partners of Amul Federation went beyond their call of duty to ensure the availability of the entire range of Amul products during these difficult times. Timely support by way of hardship allowances, logistics support and innovative direct reach initiatives also helped in boosting the efficacy of the supply chain. Due to reverse migration, there was an increase in demand from Tier III and Tier IV towns. This was met by the routine expansion drive which had resulted in the appointment of 2,700 Wholesale Dealers (WDs) in 10,000 plus population towns over the last three years. Further, there is a plan to appoint direct WDs in towns with a population of 5,000 plus in the coming years. As a result of the expansion drive last year, four new branches – one each at Solapur (Maharashtra), Leh (Union Territory), Bilaspur (Chhattisgarh) and Tezpur (Assam) – were opened, thereby taking the overall branch strength to 70. In order to ensure better monitoring of operations, Amul Federation realigned branches to 11 sales zones, by designating new sales zones at Chandigarh, Bhopal and Pune. The digitized environment of Amul Federation with the introduction of systems such as the Distributor Management System (DMS), which facilitates the efficient management of the supply chain by linking to 9,200 distributors and 7.2 lakh retailers, has helped us immensely during the COVID-19 pandemic. Similarly, internally developed technology-supported Apps viz. Amul Dash Board; Amul Track; Amul Store Locator; Amul Cart; etc. have been very handy for monitoring distribution numbers. WDSM (Wholesale Dealer Salesman) efficiency enhancement programme “POSITIVE”, has started yielding results which is indicated by the significant improvement in the secondary sales parameters during the pandemic. Online training sessions were conducted twice a week to upgrade the skill sets of employees as well as channel partners.

Exports

I am pleased to inform you that in spite of the global pandemic persisting during the entire year, our exports have grown by over 60%. Our consumer products have reached many new countries and we have been able to strengthen our distribution in foreign markets, too. We also exported a large quantity of Skim Milk Powder (SMP) during the year which helped in boosting domestic market prices. This not only cleared our inventory but also resulted in better price realisation for our farmers.

Integration of Information Technology Operations

We are happy to inform you that your Federation has successfully completed 10 years of operations on SAP ERP. In addition to AmulFed Dairy, Vidya Dairy and your Federation, all 18 member unions are also deriving benefits of using SAP for business transactions. The robust IT infrastructure set up by Amul Federation has ensured business continuity during the pandemic. The Federation has also implemented the Anti-APT (Advanced Persistent Threats) solution for strengthening network security and to mitigate cyber threats. We wish to inform you that Amul DMS (Distributor Management Software) has been implemented at 4,000 distributor points. More than 4,000 salesmen of these distributors book orders on mobiles through Sales Force Automation (SFA). The Federation has also implemented mobile-based DMS solution for 1,000 WDs for capturing secondary sales data of the rural areas and small WDs. Commendable progress has been made by the Federation on the implementation of the Amul Automatic Milk Collection System (AMCS) application at Village Dairy Cooperative Societies (VDCS). A total of 15,200 village societies have been covered in the project thus far. The application has helped integrate the Cow-to-Consumer (C2C) IT Value Chain. On a daily basis, more than 16 lakh (1.6 million) messages (SMS) are being sent to milk producers sharing information on the quality and quantity of milk poured. The Federation has adopted mobility in various areas such as WD/Area Milk Distribution (AMD) and APO Proposals, Consumer Channel for Distributors, Digital Catalogue, Milk DMS for order booking of fresh products and daily reporting from Sales teams (DSR) as part of the digital initiatives implemented. The Milk DMS is being used by more than 7,000 AMDs including Member Unions and collecting orders from up to 1.3 lakh retailers on daily basis. We also use the web-portal for reverse auction and e-procurement for cost-effective procurement of goods and services. The Federation has also developed various dashboards – Primary Sales, Secondary Sales and Stock Analysis – for the Sales teams, which are being used effectively for their day-to-day analysis requirements, as these dashboards can be accessed on mobile devices. The business review meetings at Branches, Zonal Offices and Head Office are being conducted on dashboards, reflecting a cultural change towards data analytics.

Cooperative Development Programmes

During the year, we have continued to provide technical, managerial and marketing support to the Jamnagar and Morbi Milk Unions for the establishment and strengthening of the dairy cooperative structure in their districts. We have continued to provide support to milk unions of Saurashtra and Kutch regions to organise farmers to build and develop cooperatives and increase milk production and procurement. In the last 20 years, our member unions have been implementing the Internal Consultant Development (ICD) programme for promoting leadership among member producers. Till date, 12,227 VDCS have prepared their Mission Statement and Business Plan under the Vision Mission Strategy (VMS). During the year, 91 Dudh Utpadak Mandali Sanklit Vikas Ayojan Karyakram (DIVA) programmes have been conducted and 6,332 milk producers have drawn up their action plan. Every year, on Independence Day, the milk producers of Gujarat Dairy Co-operatives conduct a mass tree plantation drive and in the last 14 years they have planted more than 817.6 lakh (81.7 million) trees.

Strategic Calf Rearing Programme:

To create awareness among Milk Producer Members to adopt scientific calf rearing practices and also to create good replacement stock and high productivity animals, our member unions have implemented the Strategic Calf Rearing Programme.

Strategic Productivity Enhancement:

To improve the progeny of the upcoming generation of dairy cattle, the Strategic Productivity Enhancement Programme (PEP) has been initiated in 4,309 villages, covering 33 lakh (3.3 million) animals. FIP-XIII, the Fertility Improvement Programme (FIP), is being successfully implemented in 3,672 selected villages covering 3.70 lakh (0.37 million) animals.

Entrepreneurship Development Programme:

YYoung and educated milk producers are trained in commercial dairy farming and management under the Entrepreneurship Development Programme (EDP). Till date, we have conducted 237 programmes and trained 15,975 milk producers.

Ethnoveterinary Preparations Programme:

Our member unions have implemented the Ethnoveterinary Preparations (EVP) programme as an alternative medical stream; taking into consideration its cost, availability of ingredients at farm level and effectiveness in treatment of various diseases/conditions at the field.

Skill Enhancement Programme for Dairy Cooperative Services Consultants (SEPDCSC):

Consultant staff of member unions acts as a vital link between Milk Unions and VDCS to ensure Standard Operating Procedure for milk procurement. Hence, we have initiated the SEPDCSC programme with the focused objective of strengthening and upgradation of knowledge and skill of the consultant staff of our milk unions. We have conducted 15 programmes and trained 357 consultant staff members of milk unions.

Take Home Ration:

The Government of India provides ‘ready to cook’ Take Home Ration (THR) to young children, adolescent girls, and pregnant and lactating mothers, through its Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS). Amul Federation has taken up the opportunity for the production of THR and its supply to these beneficiaries; and has entered into a tripartite agreement with the Government of Gujarat and three member unions – Kaira, Banaskantha and Surat – each of which has established plants of 200 MT/day. Amul Federation is currently supplying approximately 15,000 MT/month of THR products (‘Balshakti’ for children, ‘Matrushakti’ for pregnant women and ‘Purnashakti’ for adolescent girls) from these plants to around 53,000 anganwadis of Gujarat. During the prevailing pandemic of COVID-19, our member unions have also supplied additional 16,650 MT of Balshakti to all the 53,000 anganwadis of Gujarat.

Acknowledgements

Before closing, I would like to thank all those who have helped to make our Federation’s operations successful. We are extremely thankful to the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India and Hon’ble Chief Minister of Gujarat for their constant support and guidance. We are grateful to the Government of India for the immense support received from various departments, specifically from the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairy Development. We convey our special thanks to NCDC (National Cooperative Dairy Corporation) for providing valuable support to our village cooperative dairy societies. We are also thankful to the Government of Gujarat, especially the Department of Animal Husbandry and Cooperation, for their very supportive and facilitating role. The National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) has played a role in our growth and development and we are extremely grateful to them. The National Cooperative Dairy Federation of India has been providing us with invaluable support in coordination with other agencies and organisations. We are also very grateful to them. The Institute of Rural Management, Anand (IRMA), as always, has contributed to the perspective building and professionalisation of the management of the cooperative sector. We express deep gratitude for their support. We are indebted to Vidya Dairy for having organised training programmes on dairy technology for our employees. We are also grateful to Anand Agriculture University and SMC College of Dairy Science, Anand, for strengthening the dairy cooperative sector by providing technically-skilled manpower. We also express our sincere thanks to the College of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry, Anand. Our advertising agencies, bankers, insurers, management consultants, suppliers, and transport contractors have been of great help to us in managing our growth and are our partners in success. We acknowledge their contributions and commit ourselves to continue and strengthen this fruitful alliance in all times to come. The Indian Railways has played a crucial role in the growth of our dairy cooperatives since inception. We thank them for their continuous support. We depend on the efficiency of our WC&F agents, distributors, retailers, and most important of all, the patronage of our consumers, who have come to regard our brands as synonymous with quality and value. While thanking them for their support, we assure them that we shall strive endlessly to delight them. Our Member Unions are our strength. We thank them for their guidance, support and cooperation without which we would not exist. Lastly, we thank the officers and staff of our Federation for their continued perseverance, loyalty and unflinching efforts devoted to our cause.

Thank you.

For and on behalf of the Board of Directors,

Shamalbhai B. Patel

Chairman

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Indian dairy farmers can once again look forward to golden days ahead, with dairy commodity prices firming up in the last seven months. Across the world, dairy farmers have just emerged from a two-year depression in prices and there are strong indications of further improvement in global dairy prices during 2017, due to higher import demand from China. Decline in milk production last year in major dairy exporting countries such as New Zealand and Australia, as well as higher demand from Chinese importers due to decline in the number of milch animals in China, are the two major contributing factors leading to the upward movement in global dairy prices. Another significant global trend is the large differential in the price movement of fat-based dairy products and skimmed milk powder (SMP), largely due to the fact that Europe still has 350,000 MTs of SMP buffer stocks. Presently, the gap in global prices between dairy fat and SMP is at a record high. During the last two years, dairy farmers of New Zealand and other dairy exporting countries witnessed a 30% to 50% drop in farm gate milk prices, thus exposing their vulnerability to volatility in world dairy prices. The recent upward movement in prices has therefore come as a huge relief to farmers of these countries.