On 24th of February, 2019, the Kumbhalgarh Camel Dairy, Rajasthan’s first dedicated camel dairy was officially inaugurated in a festive function. The state-of-the-art facility, located on the campus of the NGO Lokhit Pashu-Palak Sansthan near Ranakpur-Sadri in Pali district is procuring, processing and packaging camel milk from nomadic herds in the vicinity, with the goal of creating a steady income for the remaining camel herders in the region and thereby conserving the state animal.
Around one hundred camel breeders from all corners of Rajasthan had arrived two days earlier to participate in a training and capacity building programme on hygienic milk production, processing and marketing.
One of the chief guests was Ms. Bettina Bock from Germany whose generous donation had enabled construction of the facility and equipping it with a pasteurizing machine and chilling capacity for 200 l. MLA Pushpendra Singh Ranawat promised to provide a solar panel installation that would make the dairy independent of the main grid electricity supply. Sarita devi, Ranisahiba of Ghanerao reminisced about her childhood memories of camels and pledged her support in all matters.
After the ribbon was cut, dairy expert Mr. Lokesh Sharma guided guests through the dairy and explained the laboratory procedures that will provide stringent quality control.
The event was only possible thanks to the support of many organizations, notably the long-standing backing by two German NGOs, Misereor and League for Pastoral Peoples. More recently, Start-up Oasis, a Jaipur based incubator has come on board to abet the business side of the dairy with a loan and mentoring. Training and capacity building is also supported by a grant from the Hand-in-Hand Fonds.
After the function, hoteliers and other members of the hospitality industry were treated to a sampling of camel cheese and camel milk based pastries.