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Buffalo, the 'Black gold' of India is already shining with a glittering future. This dairy species has been creating headlines commanding high price tags while also contributing immensely to animal protein needs of veterinary population of the country, as well as earning foreign exchange through surging export of buffalo meat. The country has made a grand spectre on the World stage being top milk producer & leading meat exporter – with crucial contribution of 71.3 Million tones milk (53 % of total) and 86 per cent of the exported meat from buffalo alone.
Buffalo meat export earned foreign exchange to the tune of 26,000 crore rupees in To maximise resource utilisation and establish scientific research infrastructure on buffaloes in India, the Central Institute for Research on Buffaloes (CIRB) was established on February 1, 1985 under the aegis of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR). An ISO 9001:2008 certificated Institute, CIRB has achieved new heights on many counts with active participation and effective dialogue with stake holders. Holistic approach and use of latest technology for research in varied spheres of buffalo production are reflected in the Institute's vision of keeping pace with the rapidly changing ambit of buffalo farming. Over the years, Institute has strived to further polish this precious treasure of the country through record improvement in productivity, germplasm production and dissemination with respect to the two most important buffalo breeds, Murrah and Nili Ravi, addressed at its main and sub-campus, respectively. The bright prospects of the two breeds are evident by the strong growth curves shown during the recent years. Elite herds of Surti, Pandharpuri, Jaffarabadi, Bhadawari and Swamp buffaloes have also been established at various collaborating centres to undertake genetic improvement through progeny testing. So far, a total of 180 Murrah bulls have been put to progeny testing in 14 sets, of which progeny test evaluation from first 10 sets has been completed, while test mating of 15th set in progress. Over 4.20 lakh doses of frozen semen from test bulls and over 88,000 doses from progeny tested bulls of Murrah breed are now available. Additional, approximately 5.20 lakh frozen semen doses have been disseminated to the farmers / developmental agencies in India benefiting over 45,000 buffalo farmers and entrepreneurs in about 225 villages under the field progeny testing program. More than 1000 superior bulls of various buffalo breeds have also been sold to panchayats, livestock development boards, animal husbandry departments, progressive farmers and other agencies for use in frozen semen production or natural mating. So far, more than 200,000 artificial inseminations have been undertaken by the Institute on farmers’ buffaloes in the field with 41% conception rate across centres of Network Project on Buffalo Improvement and across breeds.2013-14. Contribution of buffalo milk is almost equal to contribution of two major crops of wheat and rice in the national GDP. Buffalo therefore, becomes an animal of national importance for the country and at the same time as a livelihood and resource generating enterprise for varied strata of our farmers.
The changed scenario has invited heightened interest in buffaloes all around. The world looks at India as the leader in superior germplasm availability. Rural buffalo production systems are playing a major role in alleviation of poverty while the upcoming commercial buffalo enterprises now provide employment to rural communities across gender and economic strata. In this regard, a record number of farmers, farm women and educated unemployed rural youths from all over the country have been imparted training in improved buffalo husbandry practices, balanced nutrition and artificial insemination technologies. The Institute welcomes all buffalo enthusiasts, farmers, entrepreneurs, researchers, extension personnel and planners for active cooperation to build healthier India. We at this institute are committed to continue our efforts to providing solutions to farmers problems and making forward strides in developing modern technological interventions in this direction.
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