National Milk Day 2022: History, Significance and Celebrations

National Milk Day is annually celebrated on 26th November in India. This day celebrates the importance of milk in human’s life and spreads awareness about the benefits of drinking milk. 

This day commemorates the birth anniversary of Dr. Verghese Kurien who is known as the father of the white revolution in India as he played a critical in revolutionalising the dairy industry of the country.  

National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) and Indian Dairy Association (IDA) announced the first National Milk Day on 26th November 2014, in honor of Dr. Verghese Kurien. Hence his contributions and legacy is remembered on this day.  

Event National Milk Day
Date November 26, 2022
Day Saturday
Significance The day spreads awareness about the benefits of drinking milk.
Observed by India


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National Milk Day History: 

Varghese Kurien was born on 26th November, 1921 at Kozhikode in Kerala. He is regarded as the Father of the White Revolution in India by leading the world’s extensive agricultural program called ‘Operation Flood’. This program was launched on 13 January 1970 and it was the world’s largest dairy development program and a landmark project of India’s National Dairy Development Board (NDDB). It transformed India from a milk-deficient nation into the world’s largest milk producer, surpassing the United States of America in 1998. Within 30 years, it doubled the milk available per person in India and made dairy farming India’s largest self-sustainable rural employment generator. 

Operation Flood is the program that led to “White Revolution.” It created a national milk grid linking producers throughout India to consumers in over 700 towns and cities and reducing seasonal and regional price variations while ensuring that producers get a major share of the profit by eliminating the middlemen. At the bedrock of Operation Flood stands the village milk producers’ co-operatives, which procure milk and provide inputs and services, making modern management and technology available to all the members. This program was implemented under the leadership of Dr. Varghese Kurien. 

The program was carried out in phases. Phase I (1970–1980) was financed by the sale of skimmed milk powder and butter oil donated by the European Economic Community (EEC) through the World Food Program (WFP). Operation Flood Phase II (1981–1985) increased the number of milk sheds from 18 to 136; urban markets also expanded the outlets for milk to 290. By the end of 1985, a self-sustaining system of 43000 village co-operatives with 4,250,000 milk producers was covered. Domestic milk powder production increased from 22,000 tons in the pre-project year to 140,000 tons by 1989, with all of this increase coming from dairies set up under Operation Flood.  

Phase III (1985–1996) enabled dairy co-operatives to expand and strengthen the infrastructure required to procure and market increasing volumes of milk. Overall it was a very successful program which not only made India self-sufficient in the dairy sector but also a leading exporter in the world and Dr. Varghese Kurien played a very crucial role in leading this program and for that he was awarded several honours like Ramon Magsaysay Award, World Food Prize and Krishi Ratna. He also received India’s highest civilian awards, namely the Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan. He later died in 2011 aged 90 and today we celebrate his legacy through this day.  


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National Milk Day Significance: 

On National Milk Day in India, people commemorate how Operation Flood revolutionised milk production in the  country. The White revolution put local farmers in charge of milk production and distribution, which improved the efficiency of the dairy business. The GDP then increased as a result of the growth in rural income. The production and development of milk and milk products were directly under the control of the farmers thanks to this operation. This programme improved the calibre and output of milk production and contributed to the white revolution. hence this day celebrates this achievement of the country.  

Milk is a powerful source of numerous nutrients, vitamins, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium. It is also widely available and accessible throughout the nation. To spread awareness about the importance of milk consumption, and its benefits, the NDDB and IDA established the National Milk Day. As this is a day which motivates people towards milk consumption because of various advantages and health benefits provided by it and it is also a very major source of earning for the nation as well as dairy sector contributes about 5.3% of the total GDP.  

This day also promotes milk as there are several health benefits which we can get through milk consumption like kids and adults can drink milk as it helps keep their teeth healthy and prevent cavities. It also increases their height, strength, and immunity power. Milk contains essential fats that are required for developing babies too. Milk is an excellent energy source Due to its high-energy property, milk is often recommended for people who have just undergone surgery or those suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome or anemia. 

This day is also used as an opportunity to honor and celebrate the legacy of Dr. Varghese Kurien for all of his contributions towards the development of the nation. As he was the man behind the operations if the ‘Operation Flood’ not just that earlier he also served as one of the founding member of the Amul which is today’s India’s largest dairy company. But he is mostly known for bringing and making the white revolution successful in the country as at tham time India was milk-deficient and it was in a very poor state that time so changes were essential and Dr. Varghese Kurien delivered those changes so this day is used to pay tribute and respect to him.  


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National Milk Day Celebrations: 

As a part of celebrations of the day, children and adults are encouraged to increase their milk consumption for better health. The NDDB also organizes various events such as health camps, school-level competitions, and awareness campaigns for spreading the same message all across the country. 

National milk day activities include a special “Milk Mela” event organized by NDDB and other organizations to spread awareness about a healthy diet through milk consumption and its products. This event is organized in all different parts of the country. Sometimes private dairy organizations also organizes many events for promotion of their dairy products. 

As this day commemorates the birth anniversary of Dr. Varghese Kurien so tribute is offered to him all over the nation especially in the educational institutions like schools, colleges, etc. or by politicians at public events. As a way to pay respect garland is offered to the statues or photos of Dr. Varghese Kurien throughout the country. 

Most Searched FAQs on National Milk Day: 

1. When is National Milk Day celebrated? 

National Milk Day is annually celebrated on 26th November in India. 

2. What does National Milk Day commemorates? 

National Milk Day commemorates the birth anniversary of Dr. Varghese Kurien. 

3. Why is National Milk Day celebrated? 

National Milk day is celebrated because Dr. Verghese Kurien, the person who introduced the ‘Operation Flood’ and White Revolution, was born on that day. On this day, people are encouraged to consume more milk products.

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