INDIA IDENTIFIES NUMBER OF PRODUCTS FOR GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATIONS
Date : 22 Jun 2006
Location : New Delhi
Minister of State for Commerce, Shri Jairam Ramesh, held discussions with various Commodity Boards under the Ministry, here today, with a view to identifying products that are region specific and that could be registered with the Geographical Indications (GI) Registry, Chennai. The Minister had earlier visited the Registry in Chennai on 17th June, 2006.
Chairman, Coffee Board; Chairman, Agriculture & Processed Food Products export Development Authority (APEDA); Controller General of Patents, Designs, Trademarks & Geographical Indications; and representatives of other Boards participated in the discussions. It was decided that to begin with Coffee Board would register Monsooned Malabar variety that is exclusive to Malabar region from Kozhikode to Mangalore. The Spices Board have identified around 61 varieties, out of which Malabar Pepper and Tellichery Pepper are in the process of getting registered. The Board would also take steps to register Alleppey Green Cardamom and Coorg Cardamom in the next three months
On the issue of Basmati rice, India and Pakistan are in dialogue for jointly filing the GI application before the US and European agencies. At the same time, domestic GI registration by APEDA will also be considered. Chairman, APEDA highlighted the need for amendments to the APEDA Act, 1985 to empower APEDA to enforce quality standards for basmatic rice particularly. In addition, MOS also was of the view that APEDA should identify mango varieties such as Alphonso that could be taken up for GI registration.
With respect to Tea, Darjeeling & Kangra Tea have already been registered and the GI consultation process is on for Nilgiris & Assam.
Shri Ramesh was also informed during the meeting that around 21 items of handicrafts from around the country have been identified by the Ahmedabad-based National Institute of Design (NID) that would be taken up for GI registration.
Shri Ramesh concluded the meeting by urging the Boards to take care to register only such of those items that have the exclusivity. Selectivity is essential for maintaining exclusivity, he said. The advantage of GI registration is that the products would be certified for their origin; would result in elimination of imitations; and a proper inspection mechanism during the registration process would ensure quality, he added.