National Milk Day – 26 November | History, Importance, White Revolution

National Milk Day

National Milk Day

  • National Milk Day is observed on 26 November to commemorate the birth anniversary of Dr. Verghese Kurien, the father of India’s White Revolution.
  • The day celebrates the importance of milk in a person’s life.  And to promote the benefits related to the milk & milk industry and to create awareness among people about the importance of milk and milk products.

National Milk Day: History

  • The National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), and the Indian Dairy Association (IDA) celebrate the birthday of Dr. Verghese Kurien who was known as the father of India’s White Revolution on 26 November. Therefore, the first National Milk Day was celebrated on 26 November 2014.

About Dr. Verghese Kurien (1921-2012)

  • He is known as the “Father of White Revolution in India” and the “Milkman of India”,
  • He is well known for his famous project “Operation Flood”, launched on 13 January 1970, was the world’s largest dairy development program and a landmark project of India’s National Dairy Development Board (NDDB).
  • He played an important key role in the establishment and success of Amul Brand.
  • He was honored with several awards, including the  Padma Shri (1965), Padma Bhushan (1966), Padma Vibhushan (1999) by the Government of India, the World Food Prize in 1989 by FAO, and the Krishi Ratna in 1986 by the Government of India.

White Revolution of India

  • Operation Flood was launched on 13th January 1970. It is one of the largest programs and its aim was to develop a nationwide milk grid.
  • Within 30 years, the operation helped double the milk available per person in India, making dairy farming India’s largest self-sustainable rural employment generator.
  • Objectives of White Revolution:
    • Increase milk production (“a flood of milk”).
    • Increase rural incomes.
    • Reasonable prices for consumers.
  • Operation Flood was implemented in three phases.
  1. Phase I (1970-1980): This phase was financed by the sale of butter oil and skimmed milk powder donated by the European Union through the World Food Program.
  2. Phase II (1981-85): During this phase, the number of milk sheds increased from 18 to 136, milk outlets were expanded to about 290 urban markets, a self-sustaining system was set up that included 4,250,000 milk producers spread across 43,000 village cooperatives.
  3. Phase III (1985-1996): This phase enabled the dairy cooperatives to expand and gave a finishing touch to the programme. It also strengthened the infrastructure required to procure and market increasing volumes of milk.
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