Recent Changes by Tamil Nadu Milk Co-op Aavin Met with Consumer Backlash
Image for representational purpose. Credit: Aavin Kanyakumari
Recent changes in milk packets by the Tamil Nadu dairy cooperative Aavin have not been well-received among consumers. In an effort to increase profits from milk sales, Aavin has discontinued the consumer-favourite Green Magic standard milk packets and allegedly reduced the fat content in a few other packets.
Green Magic, priced at Rs 23, is considered cost-effective because of its high fat and SNF (solids-not-fat) content, which is 4.5% and 8.5%, respectively. Consumers dilute it with water to increase the quantity while retaining a certain level of creaminess and thickness.
The Tamil Nadu Milk Dealers and Employees Welfare Association has condemned the discontinuation of Green Magic production. The association has urged the state to ensure milk production and distribution without any hassles.
However, Aavin has denied such claims, stating that any changes in packets and fat content were made with the consumers' health concerns in mind, rather than for profit.
Tamil Nadu Minister for Dairy Development, Mano Thangaraj, announced that Aavin will primarily focus on supplying three milk variants: the purple packet with 3.5% fat, milk with 3% fat in blue packets, and milk with 6% fat in orange packets.
The reduction in milk prices is one of the five orders signed by M K Stalin upon taking office as the chief minister of Tamil Nadu. Therefore, the recent and sudden changes have not been well-received by consumers and are seen as hypocrisy.
Another accusation against Aavin is that its milk procurement has reduced, leading to measures to discontinue and adjust the fat content in milk packets.
Aavin Milk Cooperative Society leader Krishnamoorthy said, "Delayed payment to farmers and lower compensation compared to private milk companies have caused farmers to drift away from Aavin." The Society has been urging the state to increase procurement prices in line with the increased cost of production and to boost overall procurement.
Tamil Nadu Minister for Dairy Development Mano Thangaraj dismissed claims of a decline in milk procurement at Aavin on Monday. He stated that Aavin's statewide milk procurement is 30 lakh litres per day.
He also highlighted a 20% increase in orders for Deepavali sweets manufactured by Aavin this year compared to last year. Aavin received orders worth Rs 149 crore this festive season.
'EXPAND AAVIN’S MARKET'
The Aavin Milk Cooperative Society has called for the state-run dairy cooperative to expand its market and sales.
Krishanmoorthy said, "Aavin could easily sell 30 lakh litres of milk per day in Chennai, but the cooperative is deliberately limiting its demand." Currently, 15 lakh litres of Aavin milk are consumed in Chennai and its surrounding areas each day.
"Aavin products used to be available at railway stations across Tamil Nadu, but we no longer see them. Instead, we see an increase in Amul outlets. Even government hospitals do not receive sufficient Aavin milk," he claimed.
He also pointed to the neighbouring state of Karnataka and its efforts to protect the state-run dairy cooperative Nandhini from private firms and Amul.
Aavin milk and milk products are distributed across Tamil Nadu through more than 10,000 Aavin outlets and retailers.
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