If things go according to plan, Madhya Pradesh’s famous ‘Nimari’ chillies and the ‘Malwi’ potatoes that are favoured by potato chip manufacturers will soon get international recognition.
The Madhya Pradesh government has initiated steps to provide a GI (Global Indicator) tag to these two major agricultural products of the state.
“We are working for GI status to Nimari chilli and Malwi potato to provide them international recognition to boost farmers’ income through export,” State Horticulture Department Coordinator Rashmi Arun Sharma.
Mr. Sharma said samples of Nimari chillis are being sent to the Indian Spices Board and Malwi potato samples to the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) for further study, so to make a strong case for providing them a GI tag.
According to MP Horticulture Department Deputy Coordinator S.D. Pandey, the Nimar region of Madhya Pradesh is the biggest producer of Nimari chillis. The crop is planted over around 8,000 hectares in the region.
Nimari chillies are giving stiff competition to the traditional chillies of Guntur, in Andhra Pradesh, and Patna, Bihar. The chilli mandi at Bediya, in Nimar region, is seen as a market yardstick and is counted among Asia’s bigger chilli markets.
Malwi potatoes are cultivated in around 40,000 to 50,000 hectares in the State, out of which the major chunk of 18,000 hectares falls in Indore district alone, Mr. Pandey said.
Malwi potatoes are significant because they contain negligible quantities of starch, which is highly suitable for manufacturing chips and wafers, thereby driving bulk purchases.