Madhya Pradesh: Morena's gajak weapons for the GI tag

BHOPAL: Sweet and crispy gajak can suddenly get a Geographical Indian (GI) tag. A confection of jaggery and sesame seeds, gajak is produced on a large scale in Morena for the past 100 years or more.

This is the first time that the producers of jaggery-sweet of Morena have joined to request the.

GI is a sign used for products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or reputation that are attributed to the origin. It also helps producers differentiate their products from other competitive products in the market.

More than 250 gajak manufacturers in the district have now joined under the Gajak Mandal Brunette Association (MGMA) and also created a logo to use on the product package once the GI label is confirmed.

About 100 kg of gajak are sold every day in Morena, as people from all over visit the place to buy the candy. A combination of til (sesame) gud (jaggery) and water from the Chambal River gives it a unique flavor that you will not find anywhere in the country, a leading gajak manufacturer who has been in business for the past 70 years in Morena told him TOI.

Priyanka Das, the Morena district magistrate, who has been mobilizing gajak manufacturers for the past few months, said: We have been preparing a case for gajak to be presented while we are requesting the GI label. It includes a variety of facts such as its uniqueness, nutritional aspects, method of preparation, among others. We will apply in the next two days, he said.

Once GI is requested online, claims and objections will be invited. If someone objects, the process of issuing the label may be delayed.

But unlike other controversies related to GI tags, such as West Bengal versus Odisha in the case of Rosogulla and the more recent Chhattisgarh versus Kadaknath chicken meat, there seems to be almost no rival for Morena's gajak.

The first product to obtain a GI label in India was Darjeeling tea in 2004. In total, there are 344 products that obtained the prestigious label. This year alone, 14 products received the GI label.