Kerala

Tirur Vettila obtains GI tag

GI Registration will enhance the demand and marketability of the Tirur Vettila.

GI Registration will enhance the demand and marketability of the Tirur Vettila.  

It is unique for its high content of total chlorophyll and protein in fresh leaves

One more product from the State has obtained GI (Geographical Indication) tag. Tirur Vettila (betel leaf) is the latest entry to the status.

Produced in Tirur and nearby areas of Malappuram district, Tirur Vettila is unique for its significantly high content of total chlorophyll and protein in fresh leaves.

Eugenol is the major essential oil in Tirur betel leaf contributing to its pungency. It’s shelf period is also more compared to other betel leaves, said Indira Devi, Director of Research, KAU.

“The antioxidant capacity is more in Tirur betel leaf adding to its medicinal properties. This betel leaf is more pungent than many other cultivars,” Dr. Devi noted noted. It is expected that GI Registration will enhance the demand and marketability of this unique betel leaf, she added.

Tirur, Tanur, Tirurangadi, Kuttippuram, Malappuram and vengara are the Block panchayats famous for cultivation of Tirur betel leaf. Puthukodi and Nadan are the most common betel vine cultivars of the area.

It is a joint initiative taken by the IPR cell of the Kerala Agricultural University in association with the State Department of Agriculture Development and Farmers’ Welfare and Tirur Vettila farmers that has reached its final destination.

Tirur Vettila Ulpadaka Sangam, Tirur, Malappuram, is the registered proprietor for this Gl-product.

Pharma sector

“The possibility of using betel leaf extracts in the pharmaceutical sector is to be explored further,” Dr. Elsy, Coordinator IPR Cell-KAU suggested. ‘‘Betel leaf is traditionally known to be useful for the treatment of various diseases. Vettila is a component of ‘Thampooladhi thylam’ and is also used in preparation of indigenous medicines to treat cough,” she noted.Chewing vettila after food enhances digestion. In India betel leaf is routinely served during social, cultural and religious occasions.

The efforts were brought to fruition with the enthusiastic support from Agriculture Minister V. S. Sunil Kumar and R. Chandra Babu, Vice Chancellor, KAU.

Under cultivation

Currently the area under cultivation of Tirur Vettila is nearly 266 ha.

About 60 % of Tirur Vettila is transported to Delhi, Mumbai, Jaypore and Itarsi by rail and from there it is also marketed to Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

The other products received the GI tag before with the initiative of the IPR cell of the KAU are Kaipad rice, Pokkali rice, Wayanad Jeerakasala rice, Wayanad Gandhakasala rice, Vazhakulam pineapple, Marayur jaggery , Central Travancore jaggery and Chengalikodan nendran. Efforts are on to get the tag for Kuttiattoor Mango.

The IPR Cell of Kerala Agricultural University has received National IP Award, 2019 of Government of India its efforts in the facilitation of GI Registration.

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Printable version | Jul 5, 2020 10:09:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/tirur-vettila-obtains-gi-tag/article29214761.ece

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