A meeting on the application and use of Geographical Indication (GI) of Honey was organized, under the chairmanship of Abhilaksh Likhi, additional secretary, Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare at Krishi Bhawan.
Likhi mentioned that National Bee Board (NBB), will support stakeholders to get GI tags for different types of honey with support from State Governments and other stakeholders. “GI Tagging, will immensely help in uplifting the beekeeping community as, after the Tag, beekeepers can further proceed for value addition in honey & other beehive products.
A geographical indication (GI) is a sign used on products having a specific geographical origin and ensures good qualities or a reputation in the region. GI is important to proliferate beekeeping at national and international levels.”
Likhi said, “Government has launched a Central Sector Scheme (CSS), titled, ‘National Beekeeping and Honey Mission’ (NBHM) under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat announcement with an outlay of Rs. 500 crores for three years 2020-21 to 2022-23. 100 Honey FPOs/ Clusters have been identified under NBHM to promote and support the honey sector holistically in the country.
‘Madhukranti portal’ is another initiative under NBHM, launched for online registration and development of a Blockchain system, for traceability of the source of honey and other bee products. At present, 20 lakh honeybee colonies have registered with NBB on the Madhukranti portal. NBHM is effectively monitoring the beekeeping activities in India.”
He informed, ” India is currently producing about 1,33,000 Metric Tonnes (MTs) of Honey, and India has also become one of the main honey exporting countries. The country has exported over 74,413.05 MT of Honey worldwide during 2021-22.”
N.K. Patle, executive director, NBB, explained about need and importance of GI tagging in honey. He mentioned, “GI Tagging of Honey promotes the economic prosperity of beekeepers/ other stakeholders by enhancing their demand in national and international markets. GI tagging of honey helps consumers to get quality products of desired traits and is assured of authenticity. It will also help to stop adulteration in honey.”
Prabhat Kumar, horticulture commissioner, Government of India, mentioned, “For holistic development of beekeeping, thrust is needed to boost honey marketing at the national and international level. GI Tag will boost the rural sector by increasing the revenue of the producers and employment in the region. It mentioned special qualities/characteristics unique to the geographical indications. It prevents duplication of the tagged products, so, in another way it provides legal protection to Geographical Indications in India.
This Tag is given to good quality products so it increases customer satisfaction. The good quality of the products opens the international door for the producers. With changing marketing dynamics, it is becoming necessary for all industries today to make the best use of the geotagging service.”
Sudhanshu, secretary, Agricultural & Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), briefed about the GI tagging of agricultural commodities, “GI Tagging is based on area and species-specific, and it must be adopted with the perspective of export.”
P. Chandra Shekar, director general, MANAGE, informed, “432 agriculture products, are officially registered for GI Tagging with M/o Commerce & Industry, Government of India. He briefly explained the process of GI Tag registration in detail and also emphasized the organization to come forward for GI registration.”
S.C. Dubey, additional director general, ICAR, appreciates the efforts made for GI Tagging of Honey. “GI Tagging highlights the characteristic of products and thus helps in the marketing and exports of commodities. He mentioned that ICAR will create awareness about GI Tag through its AICRP (HB&P) centers.”
Jaidev Singh, managing director, Ambrosia Natural Products India, Uttar Pradesh, Member Society of the National Bee Board (NBB), mentioned, “Major production is mustard honey about 70%. He also appreciated the efforts for GI Tagging of Honey.”
Amit Dhanuka, managing director, Kejriwal Bee Care India, Member Society of the National Bee Board (NBB), says, “Every area has specific flora which makes it easy to get a GI tag at any particular area.”
Devvrat Sharma, director, Hi-Tech Natural Products, Uttar Pradesh, and a Member Society of the National Bee Board (NBB), also appreciated the efforts of NBHM regarding the GI Tagging of honey.
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