Nestle Lanka celebrates 30 years of empowering Lankan dairy farmers

Saturday, 4 October 2014 01:46 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  Nestle Lanka on Thursday celebrated 30 years of ‘Empowering Sri Lankan Dairy Farmers’ by felicitating 1,200 of its outstanding dairy farmers for their contribution towards the development of the country’s dairy industry at an event graced by Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa. Nestle purchases over 200,000 kilograms of fresh milk on a daily basis from 18,000 dairy farmers, making a significant impact to the rural economy. It also has 1,200 milk collection points based across the nation providing convenient access to the farmers to sell their milk to the company every day. “Achieving self sufficiency in local dairy production is a key national priority and the Government appreciates all efforts made towards this ambition. Developing the local dairy industry will not only help a vital commodity like milk become more affordable and accessible to Sri Lankan consumers, but will also serve as an engine for economic growth and rural development,” Minister Rajapaksa said. He added that as Sri Lanka’s largest private buyers of fresh milk, Nestle plays a significant role in the development of the local dairy industry. Sharing similar sentiments Nestle Lanka Managing Director Ganesan Ampalavanar said: “Our farmers have played an integral role towards helping establishing Nestle Lanka as the largest private sector collector of fresh milk in Sri Lanka enabling us to make remarkable progress in contributing towards the national vision of achieving self-sufficiency in fresh milk. We will continue on our path of creating shared value in Sri Lanka, with a commitment of sourcing fresh milk locally and delivering on the promise we made 30 years ago, to empower dairy farmers and nourish nation with local fresh milk products of the highest quality.” Nestle began collecting milk from the North and East in the mid-1980s, continuing to support the livelihoods of the farmers even during the conflict by collecting milk despite operational difficulties. Nestle was the first company to move beyond collecting milk and begin dairy development initiatives in the North and East. Nestle Lanka Assistant Vice President Ruwan Welikala stated: “The success stories of our dairy farmers bear ample testament to the significant impact we have been able to make in their lives, and it is humbling to see the development work we have undertaken over the last 30 years positively influencing the socio economic indicators of the country. Soon it would be on the brink of achieving self-sufficiency in dairy and we can be proud of the contribution we have made towards this endeavour.” He added that today, whenever a consumer picks up any product bearing the Nestlé ‘Empowering Sri Lankan Dairy Farmers’ logo, they can be confident that they are giving their family nothing but the best. .Trophies and certificates were awarded to the best farmers for their contribution towards the success of completing 30 years. Nestle has been in Sri Lanka for over 100 years. Commencing its journey of dairy development with the opening of its factory 30 years ago it has made significant contribution towards nation’s development not only sharing its expertise and knowledge as world leaders in food, but also by increasing local manufacturing and reducing imports. The company’s efforts to support and develop the local dairy industry positively impact the lives of the dairy farmers across the country, helping them generate their own income and live a better life. Nestle commenced its partnership with local dairy farmers in 1984 with the establishment of its production factory in Pannala, Kurunegala