India is looking at new markets such as Mexico for export of dairy products in a bid to boost the growth in the segment. “There has been a flat growth in export of dairy products like skim milk powder and casein. We are in talks with Mexico…They are keen to import from India. Hopefully, we will soon be exporting dairy products to the country,” a senior government official said.
According to the data from the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), India exported dairy products worth Rs 1,712 crore in 2016-17, slightly up from Rs 1,677 crore in 2015-16. The key importers of Indian dairy products are Bangladesh, United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Nepal and Bhutan. Casein exports during April-February (2016-17) was estimated at Rs 228.95 crore. In 2015-16, the country’s casein exports almost halved to R215.9 crore compared to Rs 428.5 crore a year ago, data showed.
Casein is used as a protein dietary supplement and in making cheese. It is also used for industrial applications in paints, glue, plastic and fibre. India is the global leader in milk production with an 18.5% share in the world’s total milk production, achieving an annual output of 146.3 million tonne during 2014-15 as compared to 137.69 million tonne during 2013-14.
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However, its contribution to the international dairy market is still minimal at level of less than a half percent.
“Earlier there was a temporary ban imposed on the export of skim milk powder and casein which was later lifted. Now we want to promote it,” the official said. The government had banned exports of casein and milk power in February 2011 after dairies in the country, particularly north, experienced a shortfall in milk procurement. The ban was lifted in June next year.