Israelis Building Old-age Homes for Indian Cows

Cows to get sensors that alert the doctor when they're not feeling well.

The Indian government has decided to establish an old-age home for elderly cows that have ceased produced milk for their owners - with the help of two Israeli companies.

The agreements for the project's establishment were signed between the two companies, , Alefbet Planners and afimilk, with local Indian governments.

The cow hostels will employ veterinarians and nurses specialized in treating cows from age three and up. Staff will provide the hostels bovine occupants with veterinary and other support treatments.

The resident cows will receive sensors that will be used as call buttons to alert carers when a cow is in distress.

The hostels will be built as special facilities with modern dairy barns that will be designed by the Israeli planning company Alefbet Planners, which focuses on the design of dairy barns in Israel and abroad. The equipment for the dairy barns and the modern milking machines will be supplied by afimilk, which is owned by Kibbutz Afikim and the private equity fund Fortissimo Capital. In the first stage of the plan, Alefbet will design 10 dairy barns and earn $5 million in revenue from the project.

The modern dairy barns will be built based upon the Israeli model of dairy cooperatives found in the country's kibbutzim and will hold 100 cows each. The construction and operation of these dairy barns of this size will necessitate coordinated activities by rural agriculturalists through the creation of Indian dairy cooperatives or through the development of some other joint agricultural model.

The dairy barns will contain a variety of advanced diary processing devices such as a system for analyzing the composition of milk, a milk cooling tank, a nutrition center appropriate to the size of the diary barn and state of the art milking machines.

The establishment of the old age cow home and their operations are based upon India's federal constitution that recognizes the cow as a holy animal warranting special consideration. The financing and operation of the cow hostels will be financed in part by the federal and provincial governments and by dedicated funds based on a contribution tax levied on the price of milk.

India has the largest number of cows in the world. However most of its bovines provide a negligible amount of milk as compared to Israeli cows, which produce on average 12,300 liters of milk per cow per year.

The dairy barn is an integral part of the agricultural economy of Indian villages, which for the most part have yet to undergo the process of industrialization or introduce modern agricultural management techniques. The typical Indian dairy barn consists on average of two to three cows, which supply milk and dairy products for the personal household consumption of their owners.

Alefbet CEO Kobi Bogin stated that the company had devised solutions for compensating Indian farmers for the economic cost tied to the establishment and operation of the cow hostels. The solution devised is based on genetic intervention into the determining the gender of newly born calves, such that more than 80 percent of the calves born will be high quality females, who will mature into cows capable of yielding large quantities of milk in comparison to the average dairy output of today's Indian cows.