Mother Dairy was an initiative of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB). It was commissioned in 1974 as NDDB’s wholly owned subsidiary. Since then, Mother Dairy was producing and marketing milk and milk products in New Delhi and National Capital Region with a population of 5.5 crore. Now it has started catering to the requirements of neighboring states as Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and even Gujarat.
As an ISO 9001:2008 (QMS), ISO 22000:2005 (FSMS) and ISO 14001:2004 (EMS) certified organization, Mother Dairy gained trust of people over years. With a revenue of ₹ 7000 crore and a human resource strength of 3500, the company is reported to have invested heavily on hi-tech installations to assure the quality of its products. The milk is sourced from the farmers through dairy co-operative societies and the revenue is shared among the producers.
Since 1980, Mother Dairy fortifies its bulk vended milk with Vitamin A @2000 IU per litre. It considers this act as part of its social commitment as the bulk vended milk is mostly consumed by people of lower income group whose dietary practices are often Vitamin A deficient. The company continues this programme without any support from Government of India.
Mother Dairy is the largest selling branded milk in India and Asia. Marketing more than 50 lakh litres of milk per day, it commands 62% of the market share in organized sector. It sells around 9 lakh litres of toned milk through its bulk vending shops in the area. Mother Dairy diversified into areas of production of edible oil (‘Dhara’), fruits & vegetables (‘Safal’), processed foods etc.
Whether it is milk, milk products, edible oil or processed food, Mother Dairy always boasted of its commitment to quality. They always say that they are ” committed to bring happiness to every individual with its range offering pure, hygienic and adulteration-free high-quality products which has been the strength, differentiator and heritage of the brand over years”. Its Quality Assurance Laboratory (ISO/IEC-17025:1999) was certified by National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratory under Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. Apart from several ‘productivity performance‘ awards, Mother Dairy is a recipient of ‘Rajiv Gandhi National Quality Award‘ too.
The result of the tests on samples of milk from the State Food Lab, Meerut and Central Food Laboratory, Kolkata confirmed the presence of detergents and fats other than that of animal origin. The UP Food Safety and Drug Administration has taken two samples of milk from Mother Dairy’s collection centres at Bah in November 2014.
But according to Mother Dairy, the milk it receives is subjected to 23 strict quality control measures to find contamination by water, oil, urea, detergents and the like. Any milk found to be defective is summarily rejected by the company and it can’t be held liable for any contamination of milk at village level. Milk collected at village level are chilled and transported to processing plants where it is subjected to quality tests and only good milk is subjected to processing. The company reiterates that even after processing, the milk is further subjected to quality tests and only the qualifying products reach the market for public consumption.
But according to media reports, the Government department has decided to file FIR against Mother Dairy plants at Shahpur and Gajauraha under Section 59 (1) of Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 (selling unsafe food items) with the Court of Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate. They have already initiated steps to cancel the license of Shahpur plant and to impose a fine of Rs. 5.0 lakhs on the Gajauraha plant.
Though Mother India scoffed off the reports as they were meant against the milk collected at village level. But there are reports that processed milk also from the company didn’t meet the quality requirements as fat and SNF. The report also said that the sample of milk collected from Mother Dairy outlet in Bareilly city failed on several counts and found that the water content was much more than that of the stipulations.
Earlier on 20th May 2014, Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate of Delhi put a Deputy Manager of Mother Dairy behind bars for six months as he was looking after day-t-day business of Mother Dairy. He was also imposed a fine of ₹ 10000 under Prevention of Food adulteration Act. The milk sample collected at a hotel in 2006 was reportedly of lower fat value. In the same case, Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation was imposed a fine of ₹ 100000 as they were party to procurement of milk from Mother Dairy and further sales.