DATA – India’s spice exports up 20 percent during April-Dec 2017

Indian spices and spice products surged to an appreciable export worth Rs. 13,167.89 crore on a volume of 797,145 tonnes during April-December 2017 as against 663,247 tonnes valued at Rs. 12607.46 crores in the corresponding period of 2016, registering an increase of 20 per cent in volume and 4 per cent in rupee terms.

In dollar terms, spices exports were pegged at US$ 2041.23 million as compared to US$ 1880.02 million, notching an increase of nine per cent in value.

Large shipments of small cardamom, known as the ‘Queen of Spices’, cumin, garlic, asafoetida, tamarind and other seeds propelled an increase both in volume and value, thus contributing substantially to Spice export basket and earning precious forex for the country.

The export of value added products like curry powder, mint products, spice oils and oleoresins also increased in volume and value while the export of chilli, coriander, fennel, nutmeg and mace registered an increase in terms of volume only.

Cumin was the second-most exported spice, recording an increase of 15 per cent in volume and 19 per cent in value. A total volume of 104,260 tonnes of cumin fetched Rs.1761.70 crore as against Rs.1480.79 crores and 91,024 tonnes.

“India has been able to sustain the demand for its trademark spices in international markets in the face of stiff competition and stringent food safety regulations that now define the international commodity trade,” said Spices Board Chairman Dr A Jayathilak in a press release.

Though Indian spices have become a trusted global brand, there is an imperative need to give a huge impetus to value added products and sustain their quality and flavour, he said.

Cumin was the second-most exported spice, recording an increase of 15 per cent in volume and 19 per cent in value.

Cardamom registered maximum export growth both in terms of value and volume during the period. A total of 4,180 tonnes of this spice, valued at Rs 456.01 crore, was exported in April-December 2017 as against 2,910 tonnes worth Rs 297.80 crore in the corresponding period in 2016. Cardamom showed an increase of 44 per cent in volume and 53 per cent in value.

Shekhar Ghosh is a communications consultant and and former journalist, who has edited and written for publications such as like Business India, Business Standard, Business Today and Outlook.

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