Kolhapuri jaggery gets GI tag (Geographical Indications)

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Kolhapuri jaggery gets GI tag (Geographical Indications)

Kolhapuri jaggery, which was recently manufactured in the state of Maharashtra, has received the status of Geographical Indications (GI tag).

Kolhapur Jaggery

Sugarcane is cultivated on a large scale in the Indian state of Maharashtra, due to which the production of jaggery and sugar is quite high here. Kolhapur district produces the most jaggery in Maharashtra, and Kolhapur is the largest center of jaggery production in the country.

Jaggery manufactured in Kolhapur is not only exported to other parts of India but it is also exported to countries in Europe, Middle East and South East Asia. The main reason for this is that Kolhapuri village is excellent in terms of quality and taste.

Kolhapuri Chappal

Earlier, world famous slippers to be built in Kolhapur in Maharashtra state have also got the status of Geographical Indications.

Geographical Indications

The term Geographical Indication is used to identify objects (agricultural products, natural goods or manufactured goods, etc.) that originate in a particular place or region of a country. The status of the Geographical Indications assures the quality and uniqueness of the product.

These are of two types –

  • In the first type of geographical Indications, the names represent the place of origin. Such as Champagne, Darjeeling etc.
  • Secondly, there are non-geographical traditional names, which indicate that the products are related to a particular area. Such as Alphonso, Basmati, Rosogolla, etc.
  • According to the World Intellectual Property Organization, only agricultural products, food items, wine and spirit drinks, handicrafts, terracotta and industrial products can be given GI tag.
  • The GI tag is included as a component of intellectual property rights (IPR), under the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property.
  • Geographical Indicators have been defined under Article 22 (1) of the WTO Agreement. Products get legal protection due to geographic tags.
  • For incorporation of Geographical Indicators in India, the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 is passed in September 2003. Under this, a Geographical Indications Registrar is also appointed in India.
  • To assist the Registrar in his work, the Central Government periodically appoints officers with appropriate designation.
  • In 2004, Darjeeling Tea became the first Indian product to receive the GI tag. It is important to note that the registration of Geographical Indications is valid for 10 years only, after which it can be renewed again.

Benefits of getting geographical Indications

  • This prevents unauthorized use of products found in an area, and gives legal protection to the product.
  • Goods produced in a geographical area are recognized internationally, thereby helping to promote tourism and exports.

Source – PIB

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