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Alamadhi Semen Station, a unit of the NDDB Dairy Services (NDS), has taken up the task of conserving and promoting unique breeds of milch animals that are considered the pride of South India. It produces frozen semen for high pedigree bulls, including Kangeyam from Tamil Nadu, Punganur and Ongole from Andhra Pradesh and Vechur from Kerala for artificial insemination.

Kangeyam bulls are known for their athleticism and participate in the popular traditional sport of Jallikattu. Punganur is considered a symbol of Goddess Lakshmi and Vecchur is well known for being the smallest breed in the world and has even found a place in the Guinness Records, said M Gunasekaran, Head of the Alamadhi Semen Station, which is located 25 km north of Chennai.

The station provides frozen semen of healthy and disease-free high genetic bulls of these unique breeds under Superior Animal Genetic (SAG) of NDS, a subsidiary of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB ) for meeting local and regional demands, Gunasekaran said. Each dose contains nearly 20 million sperms. The cost of each dose could vary between ₹30 and ₹150 depending upon the grade of the bull, he said.


According to S Harisankar, Regional Head (South), NDDB Dairy Services, the Alamadhi Semen Station in the current fiscal will achieve a major milestone of providing 10 million semen doses for dairy farmers in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Odisha. This will enhance milk production of dairy animals from 25 breeds of high genetic merit indigenous, exotic and cross-breed bulls stationed at its premises, he said. “In eight full years of operations, we have achieved a market share of over 25 per cent in the Southern states,” said Harisankar.

NDS is the delivery arm of the NDDB for field operations relating to promoting productivity services and producer companies. It owns and manages five major semen stations in the country — Alamadhi Semen Station; Sabarmati Ashram Gaushala, Bidaj, Gujarat; Animal Breeding Centre, Salon, Uttar Pradesh; Rahuri Semen Station, Rahuri, Maharashtra and Rohtak Semen Station, Rohtak, Haryana.

Harisankar said Alamadhi Semen Station was established at a cost of ₹77.37 crore. It houses 25 breeds of bovines and it sold 95.61 lakh frozen semen doses during 2022-23. There is a demand for Kangeyam bulls for Jallikattu while Punganur and Vechur for domestic household needs, he said.

Due to the high genetic merit semen, the daily milk potential of indigenous breeds is about 15 litres and that of exotic breeds ranges between 25 and 50 litres. At present, the coverage of artificial insemination is around 40 per cent, with plans to double it in a few years. “There is a lot of potential for our frozen semen doses. We can double our capacity to nearly 20 million doses a year in the next five to six years,” he said. Alamadhi Semen Station maintains close to 300 breeding bulls, including 72 Holstein Freiesians and 45 Jerseys, he said.

Source : The Hindu Businessline Nov 2nd 2023

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