Kochi, May 19 : Kerala, which has lost out to Karnataka in terms of domination
in pepper production, is now slipping in cardamom too. North Eastern
variety of large cardamom, which commands nearly double the price of
Kerala’s small cardamom, is likely to outstrip Kerala production in
coming years, going by the Spices Board’s effort in NE region.
The Spices Board has plans to set up a Centre of Excellence in large
cardamom research, common facility centre, training centre and quality
testing lab in 25 acres of land in Arunachal Pradesh. The board also
plans to set up cardamom auction centres in Namsai and Kimin in
States like Assam, Arunachal Pradesh,
Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura, Meghalaya and Mizoram are suitable for spice
farming, experts point out.
“Compared to other parts of the
country the North East India is underutilised in terms of spices
production. The potential to cultivate large variety of cardamom is huge
there. The NE region has the potential to grow as a major hub of
cardamom production in the country. Bulk of production in the area is
consumed within India,” said Spices Board Chairman A Jayathilak.
price of small cardamom, which is available in Kerala, now trades in
the range of Rs 620-870 per kg. Whereas the price of large cardamom is
in the range of Rs 1,650-1,750 per kg. For the Kerala variety the price
at the same period a year ago was Rs 750-1,030/kg.
the price of large cardamom, which is the major variety produced in the
North East, was in the range of Rs 1,275-1,350 per kg last year. The
prices have increased by almost 30 per cent for the large variety this
year mainly due to low availability and increased demand.
cultivation of cardamom comes under the mandate of Spices Board. It is
estimated that around 75,000 hectares of land in India is under cardamom
farming. The major areas are Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu (small
cardamom) and Sikkim, West Bengal (large cardamom).