Gopal Sutaria, a businessman, started a dairy farm with 8 cows in 2006 at Ahmedabad. He did various experiments in good dairy practices using a mix of both traditional as well as modern techniques. Today, 12 years later, he has developed his own unique way, which has enabled him to grow his herd from 8 to 750 cattle after gifting 250 bulls in this period
THE BGG Story
BGGs dairy farming is based on the use of traditional breeds of cattle. These breeds are unique to each region in India, such as the “GIR” breed for Gujarat. In addition to identifying the locally relevant breed of cattle, BGG has developed simple practices, which have raised its productivity sharply. A dairy farm’s success is determined by –
- Animal Genetics
- Cattle Feed
- Good farm practices and
- Premium pricing of products & by-products.
We will take you through few initiatives taken by BGG in each of these areas
(i) Animal Genetics
- Cows of sub-breed of GIR, are divided into 18 dedicated zones, as a group.
- Each of these 18 zones has an identified bull, the cows and the calves of these cows.
- Parental data is maintained to avoid in-breeding amongst the herd as well as to selectively improve the genetic profile of the herd with the best sub-breeds
- Natural breeding is preferred over artificial insemination(AI).
- In BGG’s experience, natural breeding has enabled BGG to have longer fertility period of cows at 12 to 15 years versus 8 to 10 years in this region which has used AI.
- Replacing in-house bulls with a better profile of bulls to ensure consistent upgrade of the herd’s genetic profile
- BeQer genetics has led to above average yield of Milk as well as lower prevalence of diseases such as mastitis
(ii) Cattle Feed
In dairy farming, the cost of cattle feed tends to exceed 60% of the total cost. Here, BGG has through in-house
R&D, as well as the use of traditional sources of cattle feed, developed a grass, locally called “JINJWA”.
Key features of JINJWA are
- Once the seed is sown, this grass can be used for 25 years plus without any additional investment.
- It grows organically with the use of cow urine as pesticide and cow dung as fertiliser.
- The grass is grown in the land attached to the farm to have zero transportation cost for feed.
(iii) Good Farm Practices
- The cattle are free to graze at a time of their convenience since 24 hours food and water is a part of their zone
- Calves are raised on their mother’s milk by reserving 50% of the Mother’s milk for the calf and the rest being used for commercial sales
(iv) Premium pricing of products & by-products
- The major portion of milk is sold on the same day at more than 75% premium.
- Unsold milk, especially during winter’s, is used to convert into Ghee. Ghee is sold at 500% premium.
- Premium price led cash surplus is used for experimentation and innovation
- Cow Urine and Cow dung are used to convert into herbal medicines as well as cosmetics.
- BGG has seen outstanding results in the cure of cold, cough, asthma, snoring with its herbal medicines.
- BGG is now starting trials on the cure of skin ailments with its herbal pastes using cow dung
- Cosmetic soaps have also seen good acceptance at premium pricing
Experiment in traditional education
In its quest for consistent improvement with experimentation, in 2013, BGG started constructing a “Gurukul”, a traditional school. Today, the school has 50 students with a waiting list of 500, who are keen to enroll, despite the school being under “experimental phase”.
- Things unique to this school
- No degrees or certificates provided to its students
- Focus on complete mental, physical and spiritual development of the students
- NO exams
- Holistic learning through the focus on teaching farming, economics, Vedic mathematics, basics of ayurvedic science through “NAADI Shastra”Sanskrit,
- Overall development with life skills such as martial arts for self-protection, personal and community hygiene.
- Each fee-paying child supports a child, whose parents cannot afford the fees
We at Gormal One strongly believe that India needs “Job givers rather than Job seekers”. We believe that based on this Gurukul’s teachings, most of its students will tend to become Entrepreneurs.
BGG is a very unique success story driven by curiosity, consistent improvement with experimentation & innovation. It has used proven traditional techniques to locally relevant surroundings. It demonstrates the path to scalable operations using its practices.
We are keenly tracking BGGs progress in all its initiatives in dairy, herbal medicines as well as education.