Staff Reporter

Joint application by Pokkali Land Development Society, KAU

KOCHI: The Pokkali Land Development Society and Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) are expected to jointly apply for Geographical Indications (GI) registration for Pokkali rice by the end of this month.

The application is ready and will undergo legal vetting at the KAU before it is signed by the University Registrar.

The application will be forwarded to Pokkali Land Development Society where its secretary will sign as the co-applicant on behalf of the Society, sources said.

Pokkali rice, a salt-water resistant variety of paddy grown in the coastal areas of the districts of Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Thrissur, is one of the first agriculture produces from the State to be considered for Geographical Indications registration.

The process of getting GI registration for Pokkali rice began early this year on a joint initiative of the KAU and the Pokkali Land Development Society.

Representatives of Pokkali farm collectives (`paadshekharamp); officials of the Department of Agriculture, Government of Kerala; and scientists from Kerala Agricultural University met at Paravoor Town Hall in early May to discuss issues related to getting the registration.

Getting the registration will recognise Pokkali as a process, practice and produce that is unique to the coastal areas of the districts of Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Thrissur.

Geographical Indication is a mark that is used to recognise a manufactured product or a natural or agriculture produce from a geographical region or locality within the region that has unique qualities and reputation linked to the place of its origin.

In India, the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act was passed in 1999 preventing unauthorised use of a Registered Geographical Indication by others.

In the case of Pokkali rice, representatives of all Pokkali paadashekharam have been included as applicants for the GI registration, sources added.