Millennium Post

Government to start 11 sexed semen labs to improve milch animal breed

Government to start 11 sexed semen labs to improve milch animal breed

Ahmedabad: Union minister Giriraj Singh Sunday said eleven sex-sorted semen laboratories will become operational with twin objectives of improving the breed of milch animals and helping farmers to prevent production of unwanted male calves.

While three such laboratories with two lakh doses are expected to start operations from October this year, eight more with capacity of 20 lakh doses will become fully operational by 2019-20.

"Eleven sex sorted semen laboratories will begin operating from this year. From October, we will start three two-lakh doses units. By 2019-20, we will begin all units of 20-lakh doses," said the Minister for Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries.

He was in the city to meet officials of Amul and the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB).

Singh said the government was working towards increasing income of farmers through the use of bio-gas, and that a pilot project has been launched at a village in Gujarat by the NDDB.

"My ministry is also working on a pilot project to cultivate organic eggs, and if these two pilot projects (bio-gas and organic eggs) are implemented successfully, they will be replicated using milk societies," he said. The minister said the government was also working on "egg cultivation".

"We produce 30 crore eggs per day. There is an inclination for organic eggs. We will provide desi chicken to farmers at zero cost," he said.

The minister further said that efforts are on to help farmers cultivate organic eggs through the pilot project and improve deep sea fishing using modern boats equipped with hi-tech surveillance. "Prawn farming in fresh water is also being encouraged," he added.

Singh said the Central government will open 20 centres to conserve the indigenous breed of cattle. "We have also decided to open 20 centres for embryo transplant, and each state has been given funds under 'Gokul Gram Yojana' to conserve indigenous breed in their respective states. Our primary focus is on conservation of indigenous breed," he added.

Singh said efforts are being made to end diseases in cattle like foot and mouth disease (FMD) and brucellosis that adversely affect farmers' income.

"FMD eats into 30 per cent of farmers' income. The Centre has released Rs 13,500 crore to uproot FMD in five years. Our ministry has also received fund to uproot brucellosis," he said.

The ministry is also developing a new model for deep-sea fishing.

"There are only 52 registered deep sea fishing for the entire coastal belt. We fish using traditional boat, which can at best go up to 20 nautical mile, but not till 200 miles, as they are not equipped with surveillance technology for cyclone, or to sell which area has more fish," he said.

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