Over seven decades ago the life of a farmer in Kaira was very much like that of farmers anywhere else in India. His income was derived almost entirely from seasonal crops. Many poor farmers faced starvation during off-seasons. Their income from milch buffaloes was undependable. The milk marketing system was controlled by contractors and middlemen. As milk is perishable, farmers were compelled to sell their milk for whatever they were offered. Often they had to sell cream and ghee at a throwaway price.