Asia’s biggest dairy cow farming and high-quality milk processing project is expected to fuel Vietnam’s milk industry.
Privately-owned safe food provider TH Milk Joint Stock Company last week marketed its first batch of high-quality fresh milk under a $1.2 billion high-tech dairy-cow farming and milk processing project in central Nghe An province’s Nghia Dan district.
Deputy Prime Minister Truong Vinh Trong said the event was greatly significant as it marked the opening of a modern dairy-cow farming and milk processing industry in Vietnam.
“The government is greatly interested in this project. Initially, I was quite doubtful of its feasibility. However, not only me but also all the government believe in it now as it applies the world’s most modern farming and processing technologies,” Trong said.
“The project is the first corner-stone for building Vietnam’s internationally-standardised milk industry. The whole country is awaiting the project’s further success,” Trong said.
The Nghia Son commune project’s construction kicked-off in 2009’s third quarter. Its dairy-cows are imported from famous diary industry countries like New Zealand, while farming and processing technologies are from Israel.
The project, financed by North Asia Commercial Joint Stock Bank, currently has 10,000 high-quality milk-cows. The number will be 45,000 by July, 2012 , of which over 30,000 will be available for milking.
The project will have 137,000 cows by 2017, when about 70 per cent of them will be available for milking and the factory will churn out 500 million litres of high-quality milk per year, meeting half of Vietnam’s fresh milk demand.
TH Milk’s general director Tran Bao Minh told VIR that by 2012’s first quarter, the company would have completed importing 30,000 cows. So far, over $100 million has been invested in the project, which is now employing more than 500 local workers with average monthly salary of VND3 million ($154).
“I can affirm that the project’s investment capital will be far higher than the initial $1.2 billion and the number of workers here would be thousands,” Minh said.
He said TH Milk’s competition with other milk makers in Vietnam like Vinamilk and Dutch Lady was not taken into account in TH Milk’s current business strategy. “But, we will soon become a leader in providing fresh high-quality milk in Vietnam.”
The project’s cows are raised with strictly-sterilised water and grass. Health is controlled by computers via electronic chips fixed on their legs, are bathed every day with music played. This can ensure their best quality milk.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Vietnam’s locally produced fresh milk output in 2009 was about 278,000 tonnes, up 6.1 per cent against 2008, but meeting only 28 per cent of all Vietnam-based milk producers’ requirement.