Spices And Condiments Germplasm Acquisition In India: An Outlook Scenario

2028 words - 8 pages

India is known as the “The home of spices”. There is no other country in the world that produces as many kinds of spices as India. India is the largest producer, consumer and exporter of spices. The climate of the country is suitable for almost all spices because of diverse agro-climatic regions comprising tropical, sub tropical and temperate regions, where we can grow various kinds of spices. Among the 109 spices listed by International Organization for Standardization, India grows about 60 and Indian spices flavor foods in over 130 countries (Nirmal babu et al., 2013) Spices constitute an important group of agricultural commodities and have played a major role in human life and history because of its specific flavours, taste, and aroma, which are virtually indispensable in the culinary art. Several kinds of spices are grown in India since time immemorial, India is the largest producer, consumer and exporter of spices, with a 46 per cent share by volume and 23 per cent share by value, in the world market. India has a worldwide reputation as the only country which produces almost all kinds of spices and it is through these spices exports the country earns the much needed foreign exchange over a long period of time. The Indian spice export basket consists of around 50 spices in whole form and more than 80 products in value added form. India accounts for 25-30 per cent of world’s pepper production, 35 per cent of ginger and about 90 per cent of turmeric production. Among the Indian Federal states, Kerala tops in pepper (96 per cent), Cardamom (53 per cent), Ginger (25 per cent) production in the country. Andhra Pradesh leads in Chilly and Turmeric production in the country with 49 per cent and 57 per cent. In coriander, cumin and fenugreek production in the country, Rajasthan emerges as the largest producer with 63 per cent, 56 per cent and 87 per cent of domestic production (Sajith Mohan et al 2013).
Egypt, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, Iraq, Morocco, Italy are important competitors in spices production. A spice is a dried seed, fruit, root, bark or vegetative material used in nutritionally insignificant amount as a food supplement for the reason of flavoring Spices are defined as "a strongly flavored or aromatic substance of vegetable origin, obtained from tropical plants, commonly used as a condiment". Condiments are usually a combination of herbs and spices blended in a liquid form (Rathore and Shekhawat, 2008). Important spices like black pepper, cardamom, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, tamarind and garcinia are native to India. India has a good amount of diversity in these crops. The other important spices relevant in Indian context are coriander, fennel, fenugreek, cumin, nutmeg, clove and vanilla. The climate of the country is suitable for almost all spices because of diverse agro-climatic regions comprising tropical, sub tropical and temperate regions, where we can grow various kinds of spices. They form an important group of agricultural...

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