The State Government will set up an integrated spice processing facility with a capacity to process 7.5 tonnes of fresh ginger at Meenangadi in Wayanad.
CSIR-NIIST (National Institute for Interdisciplinary Science and Technology under Council of Scientific and Industrial Research) will extend technical assistance.
The project is estimated to cost Rs 1.93 crore and is financed by the State Government. It is expected to go on stream during the next harvesting season.
CSIR-NIIST had developed the technology in year 2000, which has since been deployed in ventures several Northeastern States.
The latest one was set up in Sikkim just a couple of years ago, Suresh Das, Director, CSIR-NIIST, told Business Line.
The Meenangadi plant will be set up on land owned by the Malabar Union of Milma, the milk cooperative.
The project viability has been arrived at based on the highest raw material price at the farm gate of Rs 20 and finished goods price of Rs 40, the lowest possible selling price.
Ginger samples have been analysed for oil content and are found to have measured up to requirement.
The plant is expected to break even at 47 per cent capacity at an expected internal rate of return of 15 per cent.
The sensitivity analysis has also been done to evaluate the project.
CSIR-NIIST along with Malabar Union of Milma and Kerala Industrial Infrastructure Corporation will be responsible for the execution of the project.
Of the 7.5 tonnes of fresh ginger to be processed per day, four tonnes will be marketed as cleaned waxed ginger and the balance processed for making ginger oil/ginger powder or both.
A major issue with ginger has been that harvesting coincides with the rainy season, which rules out the scope for sun-drying, Das said.
Artificial drying is energy intensive and most of the volatile essential oils are lost during the drying operation.
The CSIR-NIIST technology helps retain the flavour and the processing is done without drying prior to oil recovery.
This technology had won the National Technology Day Award for the institute in 2003.