Goa to pitch for GI tags for korgut rice, Taleigao brinjal

Goa will seek Geographical Indication (GI) tags for produce that is unique to the state: korgut rice, Taleigao brinjal and manghilar mango. A GI label indicates a product’s specific geographical origin and the qualities that stem from that provenance.
To make its pitch successful, the state government has urged farmers to form producer associations for their respective crops. The government has requested farmers to “be a part of this mission”.

“Since individuals cannot file an application for GI, and only a group of producers can, it is imperative that these farmer groups are registered,” said the nodal officer for patent facilitation, Deepak Parab. “We have therefore invited cultivators across Goa to be a part of this initiative.”
So far, Goa State Council for Science and Technology has managed to record 40 farmers growing korgut rice and 44 farmers growing Taleigao brinjal. Goa Mango Growers’ Association comprises farmers growing varied types of mangoes such as mangilar and malcorada.

The total area and production of these crops are being worked out before they are pitched for the GI status.
“We need an independent agency to check the standard of GI produce so that only quality GI goods go to the market,” Parab said. “Considering the government’s targets of securing 25 GI registrations by the end of 2023-24, work needs to start now, apart from initiating a few schemes to support producers for at least three years.”
GI applications for Goan sausages, coconut shell items, kunbi saree and mussarat mango are expected to be filed by March 31. In addition, GI applications already filed for Goa cashew, bebinca, malcorada mango, seven-ridge okra and Agacaim brinjal have been examined by the GI registry and accepted for further processing.
“We are in the final stage of submitting the examination report. If approved, the products will be published in the GI journal,” Parab said. “After a 90-day waiting period, the products can have their GI status.”
Parab added, “The promotion of the products is important after the GI status is conferred. The state must form a Goa GI Board to facilitate the branding of GI goods.”
The department of science and technology is the nodal agency to undertake GI registrations for products unique to Goa. These are agricultural produce, handicrafts, food items and handloom. The department has designated the Goa State Council for Science and Technology as the facilitator for the work.

This article has been republished from The Times of India.