Jammu, Jan 13: Marking a new age of heirloom crops and products, Principal Secretary Agriculture Production & Farmers Welfare, Navin Kumar Choudhary has taken an initiative by pushing for Geographical Indication of Doda morel locally know as Gucchi.
Great Mission Group Consultancy Pune has submitted the application through Adhik Kadam, Chairman of the Borderless World Foundation, facilitated by Department of Agriculture Production for its registration as Geographical Indication to the Registrar GI Registry Chennai.
Prof Ganesh S Hingmire, Chairman of the Consultancy group presented the copy of GI application to Navin Choudhary, who lauded his efforts and also patted Sagar D Doifode, Deputy Commissioner Doda, for his painstaking efforts in projecting Doda Gucchi Mushroom (Morchella esculenta) for a global niche. He added that Gucchi holds a special place among the costlier food items as an excellent and elite because of its high cost.
Choudhary averred that Doda Gucchi Mushroom is one of the most popular, flavorful, medicinally beneficial mushroom species found in the nearby forest areas of the Doda.
This Mushroom variety is among the world’s costliest food items that grow wild and collected manually. The farming community in the district traditionally collects the Mushroom from forest areas through a well-managed community approach. Locally known as “thunthoo”, it is a familiar commodity among the residents of the area spread in the entire areas of the district.
Choudhary said that Geographical Indication shall prevent unauthorized use of a Registered Geographical Indication by others. It (Geographical Indications) will provide legal protection to Doda Gucchi Mushroom, which in turn will boost its exports, he added. It will also promote the economic prosperity of locals in the geographical territory as the farming community follows the practice of collection of Gucchi in the district from the forest areas from generations together. They penetrate deep inside dense forests for its collection.
Prof Ganesh S Hingmire expressed gratitude to the officers of the Department of Agriculture ProductionJammu and KVK Bhaderwah for extending all necessary support in the documentation of the GI application which has been accepted for further necessary action
On the occasion, Inderjeet, Director Agriculture Production & Farmers Welfare Jammu, KK Sharma, Joint Director Agriculture Marketing Jammu and Shahid Iqbal Sheikh, Joint Director of Agriculture (Extension) Jammu were also present.