The man behind Keventer
The current scenario spurred the ambitions of an educated urbanite in Sweden called Edward Keventer. He enrolled at the Dairy Institute at Alnarp in 1885 and graduated in 1886. He immediately went off to nearby Örbyhus to run a dairy and by 1888, he was considered a respected expert and ready for career in Dairy farming.
In 1890, he was recruited by the British Government, to modernise the Dairy industry in India. Over the next 50 years, he went to unleash an entire revolution, the effects of which continue to reverberate today.
Edward Keventer's Contribution
Impatient with the bureaucracy of the time, his innovations took on an entrepreneurial zeal. He explored uncharted territories, unfamiliar breeds of livestock, alien practices and extremes of climate where he single-mindedly researched, experimented, invented and innovated - laying the groundwork for scientific cattle breeding, nutrition and husbandry. All his operations were marked by a fanatical concern for health and hygiene, as much for his animals as for his farm workers - rare among colonial entrepreneurs of his time.
In an age that had no tankers to carry refrigerated milk cross-country, Edward Keventer shipped live milch cattle at carefully measured intervals, by truck, rail and water. He devised a technique for butter making without benefit of refrigeration and later introduced India to pasteurised dairy milk.
The Keventer Legacy
Edward Keventer willingly shared his hard-won knowledge with others, training Government officials as well as would-be entrepreneurs. His insights helped the British in their early researches in cattle-breeding and dairy farming. He was honoured with a succession of Viceregal Charters as well as a Royal Charter from the King Emperor George V. His counsel was sought even when it was not taken and in poetic justice, those of his ideas the British ignored or actively opposed (such as the dairy potential of the Indian buffalo), bore fruit when independent India embarked on its White revolution, inspired and led by Dr. Verghese Kurien.
At its peak, his network rivalled a modern-day multinational with operations at Karachi, Lahore, Aligarh, Calcutta, Darjeeling, Delhi and Rangoon.
The Keventer Brand
Today, the brand is over 125 years old, yet the Keventer name still strikes a chord with generations of consumers, expatriates and tourists, in all corners of India and around the world.
Here, at Keventer, we still continue to be guided by Edward Keventer’s philosophy & beliefs.