India begins export of GI certified wheat and mangoes
10 July 2021
Agricultural produce exports from India has started charting a new course with shipments of Geographical Indication (GI) certified wheat and mangoes for the first time.
India on Saturday announced the first shipment of Geographical Indication (GI) certified Bhalia variety of wheat from Gujarat to Kenya and Sri Lanka, in a major boost to wheat exports from the country.
The GI certified Bhalia wheat has high protein content and is sweet in taste. The crop is grown mostly across Bhal region of Gujarat, which includes Ahmadabad, Anand, Kheda, Bhavanagar, Surendranagar and Bharuch districts.
The unique characteristic of the wheat variety is that grown in the rainfed condition without irrigation and cultivated in around two lakh hectares of agricultural land in Gujarat.The Bhalia variety of wheat received GI certification in July 2011. The registered proprietor of GI certification is Anand Agricultural University, Gujarat.
India exported substantial quantity of grain to seven new countries - Yemen, Indonesia, Bhutan, the Philippines, Iran, Cambodia and Myanmar during 2020-21.
In the previous financial years, only small quantities of wheat were exported to these countries. Wheat exports did not take place to these seven countries in 2018-19 and only 4 metric tonne of grain was exported in 2019-20. The volume of exports of wheat to these countries rose to 1.48 lakh tonne in 2020-21.
This initiative is expected to give boost wheat exports from India. In 2020-21, wheat exports from India witnessed a significant growth of 808 per cent to Rs4,034 crore from Rs444 crore reported in the previous fiscal. In US dollar terms, wheat exports from the country rose 778 per cent to $549 million in 2020-21.
India also, on Friday, exported the first consignment of GI certified Fazil mango variety sourced from Malda district of West Bengal to Bahrain, expanding its footprint of mango exports to the newer countries of the Middle East. The consignment of Fazil mango was exported by APEDA registered DM enterprises, Kolkata and imported by Al Jazira group, Bahrain.
APEDA has been initiating measures to boost mango exports from non-traditional regions and states. It has been conducting virtual buyer-seller meets and festivals to promote mango exports. This shipment to Bahrain comes a few days after APEDA organised a mango promotion programme at Doha, Qatar where nine varieties of mangoes, including GI certified mangoes from West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh were displayed at the stores of importer Family Food Centre.
The nine varieties which were exported include GI certified Khirsapati (Malda, West Bengal), Lakkhanbhog (Malda, West Bengal), Fazli (Malda, West Bengal), Dusshheri (Malihabad, Uttar Pradesh) and Amrapali and Chausa (Malda, West Bengal) and Langda (Nadiya, West Bengal).
In June 2021, a week-long Indian mango promotion programme was organised in Bahrain where 16 varieties of the fruit, including three GI certified Khirsapati and Lakshmanbhog (West Bengal), Zardalu (Bihar) were displayed.
The varieties of mangoes were sold through 13 stores of the group in Bahrain. The mangoes were sourced from farmers in Bengal and Bihar by APEDA registered exporter.
APEDA has been conducting virtual buyer-seller meets and festivals to promote mango exports. It recently organised mango festival in Berlin, Germany.
For the first time in this season, India has shipped a consignment of 2.5 metric tonne of GI certified Banganapalli and Survarnarekha varieties of mangoes sourced from farmers in Krishna and Chittor districts of Andhra Pradesh recently.
While most of the states in India have mango plantations, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka have a major share in total production of the fruit. Alphonso, Kesar, Totapuri and Banganpalli are leading export varieties from India. Mango exports primarily take place in three forms: fresh mango, mango pulp, and mango slice.