Tamil Nadu

GI tag sought for Chettikulam small onion

Farm workers harvesting onion at a village near Chettikulam.

Farm workers harvesting onion at a village near Chettikulam. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

The Tamil Nadu State Agricultural Marketing Board and the Chettikulam Small Onion Farmers’ Producer Association, Perambalur, have filed an application seeking Geographical Indications (GI) tag for the Chettikulam small onion. NABARD-Madurai Agri Business Incubation Forum is the facilitator for this application.

According to details provided by P. Sanjai Gandhi, the IPR attorney who submitted the documents on behalf of the applicants, this particular onion is cultivated in Chettikulam village, Allathur block, Perambalur district. Every year, 70,000 tonnes of small onion are produced in over 12,500 hectares of land area here. Due to the presence of high sulphur content in this region, this particular onion has the highest pungency taste when compared to the other variants. It has around 15-18 layers of dried outer scales. And has a shelf life of 8-9 months.

The Ministry of Food Processing Industries has been working on the ‘Mission Onion Programme’ – a concept to double farmers’ income by 2022. As a flagship initiative, the institute has established a Common Food Processing Incubation Centre at Chettikulam village to redress the needs of small onion farmers jointly with the Tamil Nadu State Department of Agricultural Marketing. This highlights the importance on small onions in this region.

Chettikulam houses a Dhandayuthapani temple which is dedicated to Hindu God Lord Murugan, commonly called Vadapalani in the region. After the harvest, people around the village give some quantity of it as ‘dhakshanai’ to the temple.

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Printable version | Aug 11, 2022 9:18:59 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/gi-tag-sought-for-chettikulam-small-onion/article65601927.ece