"I visited Pangalengan yesterday and observed that the local farmers were able to produce 15-16 liters of milk from one cow per day. In several large industries, they had achieved the world's best practice to produce 30 liters of milk from one cow per day," he noted during a press conference on Friday.
Ardika remarked that if the ministry was able to help local farmers increase their production, then it would be beneficial for the farmers' welfare.
However, he believes that the problem related to cattle feed had yet to be solved. The Industry Ministry will hold discussions with experts to reduce feed prices and intervene, especially in the cattle feed processing machines and ingredients.
"We must solve the problem of cattle feed. The price of milk and cattle feed are too close," he added.
The ministry will push to solve the problem in an effort to increase milk production from local farmers. Ardika also plans to discuss with the Ministry of Agriculture to intervene to address the problem related to cattle feed.
“The Ministry of Industry can help with the cattle feed processing, but the raw materials are required to come from the Ministry of Agriculture," he stated.
In addition, the Industry Ministry has striven to reduce the import value by 35 percent through the import substitution program in 2022 on account of the fact that 78 percent of the milk raw material requirements from the Dairy Processing Industry (IPS) were still imported, while only 22 percent of the milk supply could be met domestically.
"Well, we are working very hard to ensure that our milk raw materials come from the domestic market," Ardika emphasized.
Meanwhile, he noted that the agro industry played a major role in the national GDP, with a figure of over 51 percent. The food and beverage industry is also the largest contributor to the agro industry, at 38 percent.
"If we look at the investment for food and beverages, it reaches Rp48.5 trillion for the third semester, and around 1.1 million people are expected to get jobs from this investment," he noted.
Ardika remarked that the livestock business can serve as a solution and alternative to recover the economy considering the fact that the sector has promising opportunities.
"The COVID-19 pandemic has hit all business activities. To help economic recovery, animal husbandry can be a solution since 80 percent of the milk is still imported. We also imported large quantities of meat. This is a very good opportunity to encourage business in the livestock sector," he added.
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