Nestlé has opened a new milk chilling centre in Sri Lanka as it aims to enhance its manufacturing capacity for dairy products in the country.
Located in the Mannar District, the facility adds to Nestlé’s milk collection network across the island, which it says supports approximately 20,000 Sri Lankan dairy farmers. The new site is expected to benefit 300 farmers in the town of Madhu.
Nestlé opened the chilling centre in collaboration with the Madhu Livestock Breeders Livelihood Volunteer Society. Previously, the company’s closest chilling centre was in Vavuniya, around 20km away. The distance meant that Nestlé was only able to collect milk from farmers once a day. The new facility will now enable the company to collect milk from farmers twice a day and provide farmers more milking time in the mornings.
Nestlé Lanka managing director Shivani Hegde said: “As we continue to work with local farmers and provide them the training and resources they need to produce more high-quality milk, we are enhancing our manufacturing capacity for dairy products in parallel, to support the increasing milk supply.
“We have come a long way since we first began our work in helping to make Sri Lanka’s dairy industry self-sufficient, and are pleased to note the high-quality milk that we are able to collect from local farmers today. It is also extremely gratifying that 30% of our dairy farmers are women, at a time when female participation in the labour force is an economic necessity.
“Developing a thriving and inclusive dairy industry not only enables us to offer consumers high-quality, affordable dairy products, but also serves as an engine for rural development and economic growth.”
Sivabalan Kunabalan, additional government agent for the Mannar District, said: “Previously, the people of this community faced difficulty in reaping the full potential benefits of their milk. But with this new facility and Nestlé’s strong support, we hope to increase these farmers’ current production of 1,500 litres of fresh milk a day to 5,000 litres by next year.”
Earlier this year, Nestlé launched its UHT full cream milk product A+ in Sri Lanka as it aims to capitalise on growing demand for milk in the country.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2018