Bihar’s Mithila Makhana Gets GI Tag; Know What It Is And How Is It Being Consumed


New Delhi: The Union Government has given Mithila Makhana in Bihar the Geographical Indication (GI) Tag. Piyush Goyal, the minister of Commerce and Industry, recently announced the news on Twitter, writing, “Mithila Makhana registered with GI Tag, farmers will get profit and it will be easier to earn. Due to Geographical Indication Tag to Mithila Makhana in the festive season, people outside Bihar will be able to use this auspicious material with reverence.”

As per the certificate, GI has been registered in the name of Mithilanchal Makhana Utpadak Sangh. This tag helps establish the assurance of quality and uniqueness of the agricultural/natural/handicraft/industrial product, available in a particular region.

This is Bihar’s fifth product to receive the GI Tag. Before this, Bhagalpur’s Jardalu Mango, Katarni Dhaan (rice), Nawada’s Magahi Paan, and Muzaffarpur’s Shahi Litchi had already received this tag. 80 percent of India’s supply of makhana, or fox nuts, is harvested in Bihar. The Mithila region of Bihar has received the GI Tag since it is known for its Fox Nut farming.

This action is taken, according to a PTI report, to assist makhana cultivators in receiving “the utmost price for their premium produce.”

PTI further adds that “Once a product receives this label, no one or business may sell a comparable product under that name. This tag is valid for ten years, after which it can be renewed. Legal protection for that object, preventing unauthorised usage by others, and increasing exports are some further advantages of GI registration.”

What Is A GI Tag? 

World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) defines Geographical Indication or GI tag as, “a marker used on items that have a specific geographical origin and contain attributes or a reputation that are related to that origin.”

In order to function as a GI, a sign must identify a product as originating in a given place. Additionally, the origin of the product should largely account for its attributes, traits, or reputation. There is an obvious connection between the product and its original site of production because the attributes are dependent on the geographic location of production.

What Is Mithila Makhana?

Fox nuts, or makhana, are grown in Bihar’s Mithila region and are known as Mithila Makhana. As per experts, it is one of Mithila’s three most esteemed cultural identities, along with machh (fish) and pan (betel leaf). Makhan is the name for makhana (fox nuts) in the Maithili language, and it has a high nutritional profile.

Is Makhana Healthy? 

For those who are unfamiliar, makhana is a rich source of protein, fibre, iron, calcium, and other necessary elements that promote good health.

They have low levels of sodium, fat, and cholesterol. They are therefore the perfect snack to sate your hunger between meals. They are advantageous for people with high blood pressure, heart conditions, and obesity since makhanas contain a lot of magnesium and little salt. The low glycemic index of makhanas makes them a good choice for diabetics as well. These seeds are claimed to contain an anti-aging enzyme that aids in the repair of broken proteins. Additionally, the presence of kaempferol, a natural flavonoid that is also found in coffee, reduces inflammation and delays ageing. According to Ayurvedic theory, fox nuts have astringent qualities that are good for the kidneys. Makhanas are heavy in carbs, low in gluten, and abundant in protein.

How Makhana Can Be Used? 

Makhanas are even more intriguing because they can be used as an extremely adaptable food ingredient. With a few makhanas, one can create a variety of delectable meals, from chivda to kheer. The roasted makhanas are used popularly consumed in the Mithila region of Bihar. Makhana Kheer is considered one of the most auspicious and preferred vrat meals in the Hindu religion. Apart from the above mentioned ways, there are many other forms of consumption of Mahanas in different regions.

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