Agri Business

Indian Basmati gets geo-tag of authenticity

R Balaji Chennai | Updated on January 19, 2018 Published on February 05, 2016

GI mark for basmati rice grown in Indo Gangetic Plains.   -  BusinessLine

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Recognition for rice grown in Indo Gangetic plain; MP awaits its turn

Traditional Basmati farmers in India have got a boost with the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) ordering the Geographical Indications Registry to give GI recognition for the aromatic rice.

Basmati cultivation in the Indo Gangetic Plains (IGP) in the Himalayan foothills will get the GI mark. This will cover the unique variety of rice cultivated in Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Uttarakhand, Western UP and two Districts of J&K – Jammu and Kathua.

In November 2008, the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), a statutory body which protects intellectual property and GI in India and abroad, had applied for GI registration of Basmati cultivated in IGP.

But in December 2013, the GI Registry had asked APEDA to include all areas where basmati is cultivated and submit an amended application including Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Bihar. APEDA appealed against that order as diluting the GI application will be against the interest of Basmati growers in traditional areas.

A host of rice exporters, NGOs and growers associations from Madhya Pradesh who opposed APEDA’s stand appealed to IPAB.

Even a Basmati Growers Association from Pakistan opposed addition of new areas such as Madhya Pradesh.

The IPAB upheld APEDA’s appeal and ordered the GI Registry to give GI recognition within four weeks based on the application filed by APEDA.

However, IPAB also said the claim of Basmati farmers and exporters for including Madhya Pradesh can be considered afresh by the GI Registry and a decision be taken within six months.

It dismissed the Pakistan Basmati Growers Association’s objections to including Madhya Pradesh.

The order comes seven years after APEDA initiated steps to protect and get GI recognition for Basmati cultivated in the IGP. This will preserve the unique identity of the aromatic rice in the international markets.

Published on February 05, 2016
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