Alibaug White Onion
Part of: Prelims and GS III – Intellectual property rights
Context The Alibaug white onion was given the Geographical Indication (GI) tag, bringing worldwide recognition to its medicinal properties.
- Alibaug, is a coastal town, just south of Mumbai, in the state of Maharashtra
- Local farmers have preserved the seed for over two centuries. The onion is also mentioned in a government gazette published in 1883.
- The soil of Alibaug taluka has low sulphur content.
- The onions have low pungency, sweet taste, ‘no tear’ factor, low pyruvic acid, high protein, fat and fibre content, besides high antioxidant compounds (quercetin).
- It boosts immunity, helps with insomnia, blood cleaning, blood pressure and heat-related ailments.
What is GI tag?
- It is an indication which is definite to a geographical territory.
- It is used for agricultural, natural and manufactured goods.
- The goods need to be produced or processed or prepared in that region.
- The product must have a special quality or reputation.
- The Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 provides registration and also protection of GI goods in India.
- The Geographical Indications Registry for India is located in Chennai.
- A registered GI tag prohibits a third party to use such products.
- GI is a collective intellectual property right and is thus owned by all the producers within the defined GI territory.
- Patents and trademarks are owned by an individual or a business entity.