Kerala: Wayanad rice varieties to hit market soon under brand name ‘Nadavayal’

Soon, Wayanad’s own rice varieties – ‘Gandhakasala’ and Wayanadan Pal Thondi – will hit the market across the state under the brand name ‘Nadavayal’. The enterprise is a result of the relentless effort made by the farmers of Kavanakkunnu Padasekhara Samithi, led by Padma award winner Cheruvayal Raman, at Edavaka panchayat in Wayanad.

LSGD Minister M B Rajesh officially launched the rice brand at a function held in Palakkad on Friday. The initiative was launched as part of the local body’s project to tap the market potential of the indigenous rice varieties of Wayanad.

Kavanakkunnu Padasekhara Samithi – a group of around 60 farmers – launched cultivation on a 100-acre land at Kammana paddy field and successfully produced one tonne of  Gandhakasala and Wayanadan Pal Thondi rice, the popular rice varieties in the district. Edavaka panchayat vice-president Pradeep said the local body is trying to market the rice by directly taking orders from the households and shops and through trade festivals in the initial phase.

“Later, we will sell the rice varieties in the open market across the state. Presently, Gandhakasala rice is priced at `125 per kg while Wayanadan Pal Thondi rice will be sold at `70 per kg. We have also launched packets of 5kg and 1kg in the market,” he said.   

Though Wayanad’s rice varieties have much demand, farmers are not reaping the benefit as intermediaries exploit them, he said.

“To address the issue, we decided to market the rice under our own brand and collaborated with the farmers for the same,” said Pradeep. The local body is planning to expand farming to more areas if ‘Nadavayal’ gets a good response from the market. The local body has allocated Rs 1 lakh to the farmers as part of the scheme. The panchayat has decided to allocate more funds for farming activities from the next financial year.

This article has been republished from The New Indian Express.