In a bid to promote exports of locally sourced Geographical Indications (GI) tagged agricultural products, Centre has been striving to identify new products and new export destinations.
While Darjeeling Tea and Basmati Rice are the two popular GI-tagged agricultural products of India, which have ready markets across the globe, there is a host of GI-tagged products in various corners of the country which have niche but loyal customers and need to be marketed properly to reach more potential buyers.
In line with Hon’ble Prime Minister’s call for ‘Vocal for Local’ and ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’, the Centre, through Agricultural and Processed Food Export Development Authority (APEDA) has been facilitating trial shipments into new markets worldwide for products such as Kala Namak rice, Naga Mircha, Assam Kaji Nemu, Bangalore Rose Onion, Nagpur Oranges, GI varieties of Mangoes, GI-tagged Shahi Litchi, Bhalia wheat, Madurai Malli, BardhamanMihidana and Sitabhog, Dahanu Gholvad Sapota, Jalgaon Banana, Vazhakulam Pineapple, Marayoor Jaggery, etc.
Notable shipments of GI products in 2021 included export of Naga Mircha (King Chilli) from Nagaland to UK, Black Rice from Manipur and Assam to the United Kingdom, Assam Lemon to the United Kingdom and Italy, three GI varieties of Mango (Fazli, Khirsapati, and Laxmanbhog) from West Bengal and one GI variety of Mango (Zardalu) from Bihar to Bahrain and Qatar. Around 30 kgs of a sample shipment of Joynagar Moa, a sweetmeat delicacy from South 24 Pargana district of West Bengal was sent via Kolkata airport to Bahrain.
Subsequent to the sample shipment, further orders for Joynagar Moa were received from Bahrain.
In a major thrust to exports of GI-tagged products from Bihar, the first shipment of 524 Kg GI tagged Shahi Litchi was exported from Muzaffarpur district of Bihar to London in May 2021. The year also witnessed the export of GI tagged Banaganapalle Mango from Andhra Pradesh to South Korea.
The Government has placed great emphasis on connecting farmer producer organisations (FPOs), food producer companies (FPCs) and exporters with international business communities to create an export hub in Varanasi, especially for GI-tagged agricultural products.
To ensure GI tagged product promotion, a prime location has been identified at the departure area of Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport, Varanasi. In June 2021, the season’s first shipment of 1048 kg GI Tagged Malihabadi Dusseheri Mango was exported from Lucknow to the United Kingdom and UAE.
To promote the unique GI Products from the North Eastern Region such as Manipur Black Rice (Chak-Hao), Manipur Kachai Lemon, Mizo Chilli, Arunachal Orange, Meghalaya Khasi Mandarin, Assam Kaji Nemu, Karbi Anglong Ginger, Joha Rice, and Tripura Queen Pineapple, Centre through APEDA has been organising buyer-seller meets, conducting awareness and capacity building workshops with the participation of representatives of the NER States, FPOs/FPCs, Exporters, Associations, and Government Departments such as Indian Railways, AAICLAS, NAFED, DGFT, IIFPT etc.
GI products from other regions included Sangli raisins, Nagpur Orange, Dahanu Gholvad Chikoo, Marathwada Kesar Mango, Jalgaon Banana from Maharashtra, Kandhamal Turmeric from Odisha and Bangalore Rose Onion from Karnataka, Allahabad Surkha Guava, Kalanamak Rice from Uttar Pradesh, Madurai Malli from Tamil Nadu etc.
In 2020, virtual buyer-seller meets were organized with UAE and USA, two of the largest export markets for APEDA scheduled products, in association with the Embassy of India in Abu Dhabi and the Embassy of India in Washington DC.
The meet on GI products provided a platform for interaction between Indian exporters and importers of USA and UAE. The exporters were informed about the potential GI products for exports such as Basmati Rice, Mango, Pomegranates, Bangalore Rose Onions, SangliGrapes/Raisin, Banana and products of North-Eastern Region such as Joha Rice of Assam, Black Rice (Chak-Hao), Naga Mircha, and their derived processed products. During April 2020 to March 2021, VBSMs were held with potential importing countries such as UAE, Indonesia, Kuwait Iran, Thailand, Bhutan, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, etc., for the promotion of APEDA scheduled products. Special focus was given on export of GI-tagged products.
APEDA also organized in-store promotional programmes in importing countries in association with foreign retailers such as Al-Zajira Group of Bahrain and Family Food Center of Doha, Qatar. Dispatch of samples of GI-tagged Nanjangud Banana from Karnataka to LuLu Group, UAE was also facilitated to enhance exports.
As on date, there are 417 registered GI products and of them, around 150 GI tagged products are agricultural and food products, out of which more than 100 registered GI products fall under the category of APEDA scheduled products (Cereals, Fresh Fruits and vegetables, processed products, etc).