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Khola chilli gets GI tag

Khola chilli gets GI tag

Why in news?

  • The state government has obtained a Geographic Indication (GI) tag for the popular Khola chillies grown by the Canacona Farmers Association.
  • The government now plans to pursue GI tags for Goa’s coconut vinegar, local rice varieties, mancurad mango, Harmal chillies, Mandoli bananas and other local produce.

What is GI Tag?

  • A GI or Geographical Indication is a name or a sign given to certain products that relate to a specific geographical location or origins like a region, town or country.
  • Using Geographical Indications may be regarded as a certification that the particular product is produced as per traditional methods, has certain specific qualities, or has a particular reputation because of its geographical origin.                                Khola chilli gets GI tag
  • Geographical indications are typically used for wine and spirit drinks, foodstuffs, agricultural products, handicrafts, and industrial products.
  • GI Tag ensures that none other than those registered as authorized users are allowed to use the popular product name. In order to function as a GI, a sign must identify a product as originating in a given place.

Who accords and regulates Geographical Indications?

  • Geographical Indications are covered as a component of intellectual property rights (IPRs) under the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property.
  • At the International level, GI is governed by the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO’s) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).
  • In India, Geographical Indications registration is administered by the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 which came into force with effect from September 2003.

Benefits of GI Tags

  • Prevents unauthorised use of GI tag products by others
  • Legal protection to the products
  • Promotes the economic prosperity of producers of GI tag goods by enhancing their demand in national and international markets.
  • It helps consumers to get quality products of desired traits and is assured of authenticity.

Issues of GI Tags

  • There has been a rise in disputes over the question of the place of origin of the product under consideration. This gets aggravated due to a lack of clear historical evidence.
  • For example, the disputes surrounding the origin of Roshogulla, a popular dessert, from eastern India. Both West Bengal and Odisha claim that the dessert originated in their own states. By ‘winning’ a GI tag, each state is looking to promote its own cultural and regional jingoism over the other.
  • This sort of unhealthy competition tends to polarise the country on regional, cultural and linguistic lines. Most states in their rush to corner as many GI tags as possible have forgotten to pay attention to enhance the value of products already having a GI tag.
  • As a result, neither the local community nor the customer is benefitting economically. This trend undercuts the very idea of GI protection to native endemic products.

Importance of GI Tag

  • It enables the producers to build a reputation and goodwill around their products, which often fetch a premium price.
  • GI tag helps the producers to differentiate their products from competing products in the mark.
  • GIs have great potential to play a major role in trade between countries.
  • The products help in export earning, promotion of tourism, cultural heritage and national identity. For example Kanjeevaram silk sarees and Pochampally Ikat contribute to exports and popularity.
  • Owing to the premium prices that many GIs command today, there is a possibility of preserving many traditional skills.
  • Legal protection to GIs protect livelihoods and encourage employment
  • GI allows genuine producers to capture the market and creates entry barriers for fakes.
  • Benefit to the rural economy by improving the incomes of farmers or nonfarmers.

Geographical Indications Protection

  • Geographical indications are protected and preserved in various countries and regional systems through a wide array of approaches and often using a consolidation of two or more approaches.
  • There are three major ways to protect a geographical indication:
    • Using collective or certification marks
    • So-called sui generis systems (i.e. Special regimes of protection)
    • Techniques concentrating on business practices, including administrative product approval schemes.

Khola or canacona chilli

  • It is believed that most of the types of chillies grown in Goa today were introduced by the Portuguese and over the centuries, different hybrid varieties have emerged from what was brought from overseas.
  • The GI tagging of Canacona chilli has opened up a huge revenue earning opportunity to the farmers of Khola and other villages like Cotigao, Gaondogrem, Sristhal and Barcem.
  • The locally-grown Khola or Canacona chillies are unique owing to their brilliant red colour and medium-pungent taste.
  • There are approximately 15 varities of chilli in Goa ranging from Portugali mirsaang, tarvotti chilli, aldona chilli etc.                            Khola chilli gets GI tag
  • The production is between 100 to 150 tonnes
  • About 2,000 farmers grow Canacona chilli in the region,

What is special about Khola Chilli?

  • A lot of preparation goes before the saplings of the chilly saplings are transplanted by hand immediately after the monsoon strikes in the month of June.
  • The peculiarity of this chilly is that it’s red in colour with medium pungent taste and it is grown on the hill slopes of Canacona.

Products made using Khola Chilli

  • Khola Chilli Flakes
  • Khola Chilli Powder
  • Red Chilli Sauce
  • Recheado Masala
  • Raw Mango Pickle
  • Chilli Pickle

Important GI Tags of 2019

  • Tawlhlohpuan – is a fine quality fabric woven: Mizoram
  • Palani Panchamirtham – a ‘prasadam’ or religious offering in temples: Palani Town, Tamil Nadu
  • Tirur betel vine – valued for its medicinal and cultural usages: Malappuram district of Kerala
  • Mizo Puanchei – a shawl considered the most colourful textile: Mizoram
  • Idu Mishmi Textile-Handicraft– Arunachal Pradesh
  • Odisha rasagola – for the delectable eastern sweet: Odisha
  • Kandangi Saree-Handicraft– Tamil Nadu
  • Dindigul Locks-Manufactured– Tamil Nadu
  • Kaji Nemu-Agricultural– Assam
  • Srivilliputtur Palkova– Food Stuff- Tamil Nadu
  • Goan cashew feni was the first product from Goa to acquire GI status.

Other future Contenders of GI Tags in Goa

  • Cow peas from Nerul
  • Goa’s mango king
  • Ladyfingers and a pepper variety from Ponda
  • Mancurad
  • Taleigao brinjal



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