Agri Business

Areca co-ops ask Karnataka to withdraw order on paan masala ban

AJ Vinayak Mangaluru | Updated on January 16, 2018 Published on October 31, 2016

The Federation of Karnataka State Arecanut Cooperative Societies has urged the State government to withdraw a recent order banning the sale of ‘paan masala’.

A delegation of the federation, which met the Karnataka Law Minister TB Jayachandra recently, said that such a decision will impact arecanut growers in the State.

In an order dated October 26, the Karnataka Food Safety Commissioner had prohibited the manufacture, storage, distribution or sale of gutkha and paan masala (containing tobacco or nicotine), and any other products marketed separately to constitute as gutkha or paan masala.

SN Khandige, Vice-President of Campco (Central Arecanut and Cocoa Marketing and Processing Cooperative) Ltd, who was part of the delegation, told BusinessLine that the price of the commodity fell by around ₹10 a kg in the areas producing red arecanut following this order.

He said Karnataka is the major producer of arecanut in the country. India produces around 7 lakh tonnes of arecanut from 4.42 lakh hectares. Of this, 28 of the 30 districts in Karnataka produce around 4.57 lakh tonnes from an area of 2.18 lakh hectares.

The impact of any such order on the arecanut growers has been brought to the notice of the minister and to the Food Safety Commissioner, Khandige said.

(There are two varieties of arecanut based on the processing. White arecanut is produced in coastal Karnataka, and red in Shimoga, Davangere and Chitradurga districts of Karnataka. Red variety is mainly used in the manufacture of paan masala, and white variety for paan beeda preparation.)

Published on October 31, 2016
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