A GI or Geographical Indication is a name or a sign given to certain products that relate to a specific geographical location or origins like a region, town or country. Using Geographical Indications may be regarded as a certification that the particular product is produced as per traditional methods, has certain specific qualities, or has a particular reputation because of its geographical origin. Geographical indications are typically used for spirit drinks, foodstuffs, agricultural products, handicrafts, and industrial products.
GI Tag ensures that none other than those registered as authorized users are allowed to use the popular product name. In order to function as a GI, a sign must identify a product as originating in a given place.
The organization that approves and regulates GI Tag:
Geographical Indications are covered as a component of intellectual property rights (IPRs) under the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. At the International level, GI is governed by the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO’s) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). In India, Geographical Indications registration is administered by the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 which came into force with effect from 15th September 2003. The first product in India to be accorded with GI tag was Darjeeling tea in the year 2004-05.
Benefits of GI Tags
The Geographical Indication registration confers the following benefits:
- Legal protection to the products
- Prevents unauthorised use of GI tag products by others
- It helps consumers to get quality products of desired traits and is assured of authenticity
- Promotes the economic prosperity of producers of GI tag goods by enhancing their demand in national and international markets
Significance of GI Tags
A geographical indication right facilitates those who have the right to use the indication to prohibit its usage by a third party whose product does not conform to the applicable standards. However, a protected GI does not permit the holder to forbid someone from making a product using the same approaches as those set out in the standards for that indication.
To get more details about GI tag please visit the following official portal.
The following two products have been applied to get GI tag in Cuddalore district.
1. Panruti Jackfruit
Nutritious and medicinal jackfruit is grown on a large area in Panruti and its surrounding villages, which is rich in soil. Panruti comes to mind with jackfruit. It always has a unique taste. The region’s rich soil and climate make the jackfruit rich and delicious. Every year February, March, April and May are jackfruit season. Panruti and surrounding villages are weeded during this season. Accordingly, jackfruit is sold more during this season. Panruti is special because each of the balls are slightly thick, long and very sweet. The fruits produced here are sent to big cities like Chennai, Trichy, Coimbatore, Madurai in Tamil Nadu and neighbouring states like Puducherry, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
2. Panruti Cashew Nut
Panruti plays a very important role in the Indian cashew export market. Though cultivated all over India, panruti cashews have a unique taste. While 6 types of cashews are considered important in India, panruti cashew has the highest protein content of 23 grams per 100 grams. Panruti does not spoil as moisture is very less. Panruti cashew is mostly cultivated in coastal sandy, loamy and gravelly soils. Thousands of hectares of cashews are cultivated in Panruti, Kurinchipadi, Vridthachalam and other areas of Cuddalore district. Tens of thousands of metric tons of cashews are produced annually from it. Cashews produced here are exported to countries like USA, Singapore, and Malaysia etc. Cashews earn thousands of crores of foreign exchange through this. Flowering begins in February and March and harvest is completed in April and May. Many companies are operating here to break and process these cashew nuts, grade them for export, and produce cashew oil, punnaku, etc. as a subsidiary industry. Through these, about 80% of the people living in this area are getting employment every year. Apart from that, cashew nut processing is also an important cottage industry of the women of this region.