About Verghese Kurien
- Verghese Kurien was born in Kozhikode, Kerala (then Madras Presidency) on 26th November 1921 into an affluent family. His father was a civil surgeon.
- He graduated in Physics from the Loyola College, Madras (now Chennai) and then completed a degree in mechanical engineering from the College of Engineering in the same city.
- Verghese Kurien (26 November 1921 – 9 September 2012), known as the “Father of the White Revolution” in India, was a social entrepreneur whose “billion-litre idea”, Operation Flood, made dairy farming India’s largest self-sustaining industry and the largest rural employment sector providing a third of all rural income.
- He pioneered the Anand model of dairy cooperatives and replicated it nationwide, based on various “top-down” and “bottom-up” approaches, where no milk from a farmer was refused and 70–80% of the price by consumers was paid in cash to dairy farmers.
- In 1973, he set up the Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd. to set up dairies in a similar model (Anand pattern) all over Gujarat and use one brand name of Amul.
- An invention at Amul was the production of milk powder from buffalo milk instead of from cow milk, which was in short supply in India.
- He also made India self-sufficient in edible oils and fought against the “oil kings”, who used underhanded and violent methods to enforce their dominance over the oilseed industry.
- Kurien’s ‘White Revolution’ also led to the development of another brand ‘Mother Dairy’.
Verghese Kurien Honored with Following Awards
- Ramon Magsaysay Award – 1963
- Padma Shri – 1965
- Padma Bhushan – 1966
- Krishi Ratna – 1986
- World Food Prize – 1989
- International Person of the Year (World Dairy Expo) – 1993
- Padma Vibhushan – 1999