Geographical Indication Tag: Arecanut gets its first GI tag for ‘Sirsi Supari’

Arecanut, known as supari or betel nut, made its entry in the list of agricultural produce for the first time with the Geographical Indication (GI) tag for ‘Sirsi Supari’.

The GI tag was accorded by the Registrar of Geographical Indications in the first week of March 2019.  

Sirsi-based agri cooperative, Totagars’ Cooperative Sale Society (TSS) Ltd is the registered proprietor of the Sirsi Supari. The cooperative began the process of obtaining a GI tag for Sirsi Supari in 2013.

Sirsi Supari

The ‘Sirsi Supari’ is grown in Sirsi, Siddpaur and Yellapur taluks of Uttara Kannada district in Karnataka.

Production of arecanut in these three taluks is around 7 percent of the total arecanut production in Karnataka.

The GI tag will guarantee the authenticity of arecanut grown in these taluks, and ensure a better market.

Grown on an area of around 40,000 acres, the annual production of ‘Sirsi Supari’ is estimated to be around 40,000 tonnes.

Sirsi Supari is medium sized, round in shape and has ash coloured hard seed.

The fruit of Sirsi Supari turns from yellow to red upon ripening.

The fruit consists of a thick fibrous husk that encloses this seed.

The Sirsi Supari of Karnataka tastes differently in comparison to the supari grown in other parts of the country due to the differences in the different chemical composition of different arecanuts.

Arecanut

  • The arecanut is the fruit of the areca palm that grows in much of the tropical Pacific, Southeast and South Asia, and parts of east Africa. It is commonly referred to as betel nut (chewing nut or Supari).
  • In India, it is extensively used by large sections of people and is linked with religious practices.
  • India is the largest producer of arecanut and at the same time largest consumer also.
  • The nut is majorly cultivated in Karnataka, Kerala, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Meghalaya and West Bengal.

About Geographical Indication (GI)

A Geographical Indication (GI) tag is a name or sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation of that origin. It can be a town, a region, or a country.

The use of a geographical indication acts as a certification that the product possesses certain qualities, is made according to traditional methods, and enjoys a certain reputation due to its geographical origin.

It is used for agricultural, natural and manufactured goods having a special quality and reputation.

It plays a very important role to increase the realm of the market.

It boosts exports as well tourism and more importantly, it indirectly leads to sustainable development.

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