Can Stellapps fix milk for India?

Using IoT, facial recognition and not a lot of venture money, Stellapps wants to change all that’s broken with dairy farming

Mohan’s milk collection centre in Thernahalli village in Karnataka’s Kolar district is bustling with activity. Villagers—men, women, even children—come in, pour the milk they have brought, share a joke, and move on to make way for the next farmer in the queue.

Outside, the scene is different.
Streets are empty. Doors of many of the 300 houses are closed. It is half past seven in the evening and the village seems ready to wind up for the day.
Inside the 6 ft x 12 ft room there is hardly any place to stand. The floor is occupied by cans full of milk.

On Mohan’s work desk, amid the maze of wires, sits an automatic milk collection unit, controlled by an Android-based IoT device. (IoT, or Internet of Things, refers to internet-connected devices, which can be anything from smart lightbulbs to factory machinery.)

Samples from each batch of milk, ranging from 1 to 5 litres, are processed through the machine, which examines the quality of the milk and determines the rate to be paid accordingly. It prints a receipt for the farmer and sends the data to the cloud; the farmer also gets an SMS notification after the transaction.

To access this post, you must purchase Subscription, Regular, Regular – Annual, Regular – Monthly or Student.

Lead image: A cow at Akshayakalpa's R&D farm in Channarayapatna, Hassan district.

Photographs by Pradip K. Saha


Subscribe to read this story and more
100+ new, deeply reported stories and 50+ shorts a year
Things Change, TMC’s weekly newsletter
Full access to the archives