The partnership between BRAC and Promethean Power Systems to reduce spoilage of raw milk produced by dairy farmers has proven a success. Buoyed by the success of their initial investment in five Rapid Milk Chillers, BRAC has recently purchased 19 more similar units from Promethean. The aim is to link more dairy farmers to key markets while maintaining the quality of raw milk, said a statement.
BRAC collects milk from over 100 village-level chilling centers, where at least 50,000 dairy farmers pool their daily produce, to sell packaged dairy products under its Aarong brand. In the long run, this is expected to bring more consumers into the fold of the formal, processed and packaged milk market in Bangladesh.
About 80 per cent of the Bangladesh milk market is still unorganised. Moreover, in deep rural pockets of Bangladesh where milk represents the only steady source of income for thousands of homestead dairy farmers – a clear majority of whom are women – weak urban market linkage has meant that a significant amount of raw milk does not reach dairy processors within the required quality parameters.
Promethean Power’s Rapid Milk Chillers use a patented thermal energy storage technology that instantly chills raw milk to 4 degrees centigrade at the milk collection centers even in the absence of grid electricity and without using a diesel generator, has revolutionized quality assurance mechanism by helping farmers preserve milk it is collected for processing by overcoming common limitations faced by farmers in the developing nations – irregular electricity supply, poor infrastructure, and expensive diesel generator backup.
As milk spoilage rates have dramatically dipped following the installation of the Rapid Milk Chillers, BRAC has been able to instill greater confidence among dairy farmers about finding guaranteed offtake of their milk every day. As timely milk chilling continues to bring better returns to farmers based on the quality of milk, many have made profits substantial enough to afford an investment in new cows — a mark of both progress and prestige in the local community.
Nour-E-Alom, Manager, Milk Procurement, BRAC Dairy and Food Enterprise, said that they were looking for a solution that would be cost effective, eco-friendly, and scalable. "Promethean's solution for our milk collection center is both cost effective and eco-friendly and we are extremely happy with the results. By installing Promethean's Rapid Milk Chillers in the villages, we are able to eliminate wastage by over 90% and increase the volume of our collection," he said.
"By helping chill raw milk at the village collection center without the need for a diesel generator, Promethean's Rapid Milk Chillers present a simple and cost-effective solution to similar problems that developing milk-producing nations face. BRAC, with its Aarong brand, is doing a commendable job of helping farmers augment their income by linking them to urban markets. We are pleased to help BRAC realize its mission to channel quality milk from rural to urban areas." - Jofi Joseph, Director of Sales and Marketing, Promethean Power Systems
Promethean Power’s innovative solutions have already attracted attention and is gaining in popularity across the subcontinent.