Millions to Benefit From Intervet Project in India

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Akzo Nobel’s animal healthcare business, Intervet, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding to exclusively supply veterinary products for a special project in India which could benefit more than two million rural families.

(CSRwire) Arnhem, the Netherlands ? Akzo Nobel’s animal healthcare business, Intervet, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding to exclusively supply veterinary products for a special project in India which could benefit more than two million rural families.

The partnership, with Indian NGO the BAIF Development Research Foundation, involves Intervet India providing products to BAIF, who in turn will make them available to small-scale farmers via their extensive network of Dairy Cattle Breeding Centers (CBC). A number of livestock disease diagnostic centers will also be established.

A voluntary organization established in 1967, BAIF operates more than 1,200 CBCs in nine states, with each center serving up to 12 villages and 1,500 families. The aim of the collaboration is to offer self-employed farmers in remote villages access to vital veterinary products?at a fair price?through the existing network of CBCs for the benefit of the rural livestock sector.

“Many of India’s farmers have limited access to quality veterinary products,” explained General Manager of Intervet, Ruurd Stolp. “Improving animal health through this project will help to boost livestock performance and support the livelihoods of farmers who often don?t have the means to use this kind of assistance.”

The agreement with BAIF will begin with a three-month trial in Gujarat and Karnataka, where around 250,000 families will have access to Intervet India?s livestock range, including vaccines and anti-infectives. Once the trial is over in early 2006, an evaluation and fine-tuning will take place. The project will then be extended nationwide to cover all the CBCs.

“Socially responsible business development has a key role to play in our global activities,” said Akzo Nobel CEO Hans Wijers. “This contract?which will make our animal healthcare products more widely available throughout the country?will have a positive and sustainable impact for all concerned. Intervet India has established a number of initiatives designed to meet the needs of the local community and the BAIF agreement is further proof of the importance we attach to developing all aspects of our Corporate Social Responsibility efforts.”

Established as a public charitable trust by Dr. Manibhai Desai, BAIF is headquartered in Pune and employs trained vets and paravets at its CBCs, who visit farmers to offer support and animal healthcare assistance.

“Our mission is to create opportunities for gainful self-employment among rural families, especially the disadvantaged,” said BAIF President Dr. N.G. Hegde. “The aim of this project will be to promote good animal health, low production costs, clean milk and improved fertility. By setting up this partnership with Intervet India, we will also help farmers to create a more sustainable livelihood and ultimately establish a more self-reliant and vibrant rural economy.”

Note for the editor
Akzo Nobel, based in the Netherlands, serves customers throughout the world with healthcare products, coatings and chemicals. Listed on both the Euronext and NASDAQ Stock Exchanges, the company is a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index. Consolidated revenues for 2004 totaled EUR 12.7 billion. The company currently employs some 62,000 people in more than 80 countries. The financial results for 2005 will be published on February 7, 2006.


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Source: Press release from: Akzo Nobel (link opens in a new window)