ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is giving 2,771 acres of land coming under two state agencies to five private companies to start commercial dairy farms, Agriculture Minister Mahindanda Aluthgamage said.
The land will be given on 30 year leases.
Access Agro (Pvt.) Ltd and HBKIR International will et 700 acres from National Livestock Development Board farm in Nikaweratiya.
Pesara Logistics Institute will be given 60 acres from the same farm.
Farm’s Pride (Pvt) Ltd will get 811 acres from Galabodawaththa Estate and Mount Jean Estate belonging to the Janatha Estate Development Board.
Hillside Agro (Pvt.) Ltd will get 200 acres from Delthota Estate and 150 acres from Grate Valley belonging to the Janatha Estate Development Board.
Allotment of 250 acres of Kottukachchiya farm belonging to the National Livestock Board to Gamma Pizzakraft Lanka (Pvt) Ltd.
Gamma Pizzakraft Lanka (Pvt) Ltd will get 250 acres from Kottukachchiya farm belonging to the National Livestock Board.
The firms will invest 8.0 billion rupees and import 4,200 milch cows for the farms, Minister Aluthgamage said.
By 2025, they hope to grow a herd of 25,000 cows.
The land will be used to grow grass.
“The main problem with Sri Lanka’s dairy sector is lack of feed,” he said. “Large tracts of land is needed to grow grass.”
Aluthgamage said the idea was to make Sri Lanka self-sufficient in milk.
Sri Lanka’s ruling class also has a long-standing idea to stop people drinking powdered milk.
Aluthgamage said Sri Lanka spent a million dollars a day on importing dairy products and they wanted to make Sri Lanka produce all items that can be produced domestically.
Other analysts have advised authorities stop printing money so that import substitution firms will not be able to exploit poor consumer under cover of import duties and the country could have free trade. (Colombo/Sept07/2021)