August 7, 2018
Sundarban’s Chowringhee cooperative – A model for eastern India
Sundarban Cooperative Milk & Livestock Producers Union Limited’s brand, Sundarini Naturals has been awarded by the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) for its superior quality dairy products. Sundarini has set a benchmark in terms of using organic fertilizers for producing its products.
The group of cooperatives, based in villages of the Sundarbans in South 24 Parganas district, is run by women. More than 3,000 women, across 65 cooperative societies, have earned their much-awaited financial independence through Sundarini. The State Government (Animal Husbandry Department) is directly depositing the money earned by selling the products through cooperatives, in the account of these women.
Now, Chowringhee, a cooperative under Sundarban Cooperative Milk & Livestock Producers Union, and thus a producer of Sundarini Naturals products, has been selected a model for eastern India by NDDB. It is located in Basanti. A training hub would be located in Basanti where people from across eastern India would be trained in superior environment-friendly ways of manufacturing products.
An integrated organic approach has been adopted by the Chowringhee cooperative. Each family raises cows for milk, and their dung is used to produce biogas in a mini-plant. That biogas is used cook meals for the entire family, and the waste product from the plant, in the form of slurry, is used as organic fertilizer in farming. The fertilizer helps in producing grass for the cows as well as rice and pulses. Again, the leftover stalks after cutting the paddy and pulse crops are used as feed for the cows, hens and ducks being raised by the family. Hence, the eggs also become organic products.