Tirur Betel Leaf Receives GI Tag

 

Intellectual Property

Geographical Indications Registry has recently granted Geographical Indication (GI) tag to Tirur Betel Leaf from Kerala. Also known as Tirur Vettila, the betel leaf is cultivated in Tirur, Tirurangadi, Tanur, Kuttippuram, and nearby areas of Malappuram district in Kerala. The high content of chlorophyll, protein, and antioxidant capacity is what makes this product unique. Appreciated for its mild stimulant, digestive, and medicinal properties, Tirur Vettila is mainly used in making pan masala.

The Tirur Vettila Ulpadaka Sangam expedited by Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Cell, Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) had applied for the GI tag in 2018.

Director of Research at KAU, Indira Devi, said that the Tirur Vettila consists of Eugenol, the essential oil contributing to its pungency. Moreover, the shelf period of this unique product is comparatively more than other betel leaves. She added that the considerably more antioxidant capacity in Tirur Vettila adds to its medicinal properties and this leaf is more pungent in comparison with many other cultivars. Additionally, she said that the GI Registration is expected to upsurge the marketability and demand of the product.

Recognized under the registered owner – Tirur Vettila Ulpadaka Sangam, Malappuram, this GI-product is a collective initiative taken by the IPR cell of the KAU, State Department of Agriculture Development and Farmers’ Welfare, and Tirur Vettila farmers, and has now reached its ultimate destination.

Pharmaceutical Sector

Coordinator at IPR Cell-KAU, Dr. Elsy, suggested that the probabilities of using these betel leaf extracts in the pharmaceutical industry are to be explored more. Vettila is an ingredient of ‘Thampooladhi thylam’ and is used in the manufacturing of indigenous medicines to treat cough. She noted that the betel leaf traditionally is famous for its usefulness in treating several diseases. Vettila, if chewed after food enhances digestion. Betel leaf, in India, is routinely served at the time of social, religious, and cultural occasions.

Area under Cultivation

Tirur Vettila, currently, is cultivated over an area of 22 hectares. Nearly 60% of the overall production is firstly transported to Delhi, Mumbai, Itarsi, and Jaypore through rails and then from there, it is marketed to Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.

Before this initiative of the IPR Cell of the KAU, the Geographical Indications Registry has granted the GI tag to many other products, such as:

  • Kaipad rice,
  • Pokkali rice,
  • Marayur jaggery,
  • Vazhakulam pineapple,
  • Chengalikodan nendran,
  • Wayanad Jeerakasala rice,
  • Central Travancore jaggery,
  • Wayanad Gandhakasala rice.

Furthermore, efforts to bring the Kuttiattoor Mango amongst the GI tag gainers are in process.

The Government of India has awarded the IPR Cell of Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) for its efforts in the facilitation of Geographical Indication Registration. For more visit: https://www.trademarkmaldives.com

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