March 14-17, Zhemgang: The National Dairy Research Centre (NDRC), Yusipang collaborated with Bhutan Association of Women Entrepreneurs (BAOWE) to provide training on dairy products processing, diversification and packaging for Dairy farmer groups of Buli, Panbang, Trong, Ponchula, Tama and Tshalajong. The training was a part of the Project TA-BHU 9016, decentralised coordination and partnership for gender equality, funded by the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR 9155) through the ADB. The TA provides support for capacity building and exposure for women farmer groups in Zhemgang, Trashigang and Trongsa for various agricultural, livestock and medicinal plant activities.
The resource persons from NDRC trained the BAOWE group members at the RNR centre of Samtenling, Gelephu. Participants were imparted theoretical lessons on production of clean milk at farmer level. Training also emphasised the importance of producing clean milk with low microbial levels on the final quality and shelf life of finished products as well as impact on human health. Participants were provided both theoretical and practical lessons on platform milk tests to be conducted while receiving milk from individual farmers. They were made aware of the need to conduct platform milk tests on all samples and the need to reject milk of poor quality was emphasised. Raw milk that passes all the platform milk tests is suitable for collection and supply to the processing unit for production of dairy products.
Due to limited market for liquid milk, the group members were provided hands on practical training on the processing of yogurt, butter, paneer and cottage cheese. Following the practical training, the members were required to produce the products without assistance from the resource persons which they managed to do successfully. They were also informed on the importance of maintaining hygiene and cleanliness of the processing unit, equipment and production personnel due to their impact on the quality of finished products.
Following the training, BAOWE intends to have the participants implement their training for the production and marketing of dairy products at their respective areas.
Submitted by Dairy Post Production Research Sector, NDRC, Yusipang
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