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Turmeric, Curcuma domestica Val., was probably domesticated in southern or south-east Asia and is no longer found in a truly wild state. It has been suggested that it first reached East Africa in the eighth century AD, carried by the Bornean people who settled Madagascarand some of whose descendants on the latter island still cultivate turmeric. However, despite the long history of contacts between the Malagasy and the Swahili (who founded settlements on the north Madagascar coast), there is no firm evidence from other sources to indicate that turmeric was grown in Zanzibar or other places on the Swahili coast until relatively recently. Turmeric as a crop is not mentioned in the literature prior to the nineteenth century, and on Pemba in particular there are no unambiguous traces or records of its cultivation before its recent introduction in Mwambe. The linguistic evidence suggests that turmeric was first encountered on the East African coast and islands as a processed trade item, or perhaps in the form of harvested rhizomes ready for pounding. The turmeric powder, and was only later extended to include the plant which provides it .Although ground turmeric is principally used as a spice to impart both flavour and colour to food, and is one of the main ingredients in curry powders, one of its chief early uses among the Swahili-speakers of Zanzibar appears to have been as a dye for colouring mats and other in edibles .This practice has given rise to the Swahili term for the colour yellow, rangi ya manjano, which literally means the colour of turmeric powder. Curry powder, however, is given a quite different Swahili name bizar i suggesting that it was introduced separately, also as a processed item of trade.

Food Additive
Turmeric is a mild aromatic stimulant used in in the manufacture of curry powders. Turmeric is used in products that are packaged to protect them from sunlight. The oleoresin component of turmeric is used for oil-containing products. The curcumin solution or curcumin powder dissolved in alcohol is used for water containing products. Sometimes in pickles and mustard, turmeric is used to compensate for fading. Turmeric is also used for coloring cheeses, salad dressings, margarine, yoghurts, cakes, biscuits, popcorn, cereals, sauces, etc. Turmeric also forms a substitute for mustard in the cattle feed.

Turmeric is used for treating digestive disorders. Raw Turmeric juice is used to treat hyper acidity and indigestion. The juice of raw turmeric also acts as a blood purifier. Curcumin - an active component of turmeric, has anti-oxidant properties and so turmeric is used in alternative medicine. Turmeric is used for cuts and burns as it is believed to have antiseptic effects and promotes healing. Curcumin also has an anti-inflammatory effect by reducing histamine(hormone) levels. The flouride present in turmeric is essential for teeth. Turmeric also has a protective effect on the liver and also in atherosclerosis.

The juice of raw turmeric is applied to the skin as a paste, kept for around thirty minutes and then washed off. It adds glow to the skin. It is an essential ingredient of the traditional bathing ritual of Indian marriages where it is applied along with sandal wood paste before the bath. It is believed that regular bathing in water containing turmeric reduces growth of body hair. Regular turmeric use is said to make the skin fair, soft and smooth. Turmeric is used for spots caused due to pigmentation or blotches and also for diseases like eczema.

As a tester for Acids and Alkalies

Unglazed white paper is saturated with an alcoholic solution of curcumin. When dried, this paper is used for testing of alkalies, acids and boric acid. Alkali and Acid Test : The paper turns red-brown with alkalies. This color becomes violet upon drying and the original yellow color is restored with acids. Boric Acid Test : When the paper is dipped into a solution of boric acid, it turns orange-red. The color remains so even when it is moistened with free mineral acid. Paper that has been turned to orange by boric acid will assume a blue color when it is moistened with diluted alkali.

Miscellaneous Uses
Ayurveda states that turmeric is poisonous for crocodiles. So anyone swimming in crocodile infested waters should apply turmeric paste to protect himself. Turmeric is also believed to ward off snakes and the presence of turmeric plants around the house acts as a barrier for them. The turmeric paste is used in Indian medicine for snakebites. The leaves of turmeric are said to act as mosquito repellents. Turmeric is used as a coloring agent for filter paper used in scientific tests. It has been recently discovered that in water cooled type of radiators, a spoonful of turmeric added to the water, plugs any leaks.

Climate & Soil

Turmeric is a tropical herb and can be grown on different types of soil under irrigated and rainfall conditions. It is a shade tolerant crop with shallow roots suitable for intercropping and as a component crop in the homesteads where low to medium shade is available. Turmeric can be grown in diverse tropical conditions from sea level to 1500 m above sea level, at a temperature range of 20 to 30oC with an annual rainfall of 1500 mm or more, under rain fed or irrigated conditions. Though it can be grown on different types of soils, it thrives best in welldrained sandy or clay loam soils.

Depending upon the variety, the crop becomes ready for harvest in 7 to 9 months after planting during January and March. Early varieties mature in 7 to 8 months, medium varieties in 8 to 9 months and late varieties after 9 months. The land is ploughed and the rhizomes are gathered by hand picking or the clumps are carefully lifted with a spade. The harvested rhizomes are cleared of mud and other extraneous matter adhering to them. Turmeric is a seasonal product which is available in the market mainly in two seasons, commencing in mid February to May and second season is mid August to October.

Pre-Harvest and Post - Harvest Operations in Turmeric

The quality of any product depends upon the quality of raw. materials and the practices adopted in processing. packing. storing and transportation. In the case of agricultural products. therefore. . constant care right from pre harvest operations till the products reach the consumers become imperative. Pre-harvest operation-some critical aspects The planting material may be treated with suitable insecticide / fungicide. but only at the recommendation and supervision of experts. Pesticides banned in the countries importing turmeric from India should never be used. In case the crop is affected by diseases or infested by pests apply fungicides or insecticide, only after consulting experts and at . the dosage and schedule recommended by them. It is to be borne in mind that turmeric is being checked for the presence of pesticide rp.sidues by the importing countries. Harvesting-important points Harvest the crop only when it is fully matured. l'1atUrity is indicated by the drying up of the plant including the base of the stem. While harvesting, care should be taken not to cause any damage to the rhizomes. The leafy stems are then cut off, roots removed to the

adhering earth shaken off. The rhizomes are washed well with water to remove the mud and dirt adhering to them. The fingers are separated from the bulbs.

A number of cultivars are available in the country and are known mostly by the name of locality where they are cultivated. The important varieties used in India are: Alleppey Finger (Kerala) and Erode and Salem turmeric (Tamil Nadu), Rajapore and Sangli turmeric (Maharashtra) and Nizamabad Bulb (Andhra Pradesh). In Tamilnadu, the important varieties cultivated are Erode local, BSR1, PTS10, Roma, Suguna, Sudarsana and Salem local. Among these varieties, 7075% is occupied by the local varieties.

The major turmeric producing states in India are Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Orissa contributing about 65% of the total production in the year 200607. In Andhra Pradesh Turmeric cultivation is largely confined to five agro climatic zones. Duggirala Zone (Krishan & Guntur Districs) Cuddapath Zone ( Cuddapath and Kurnul districts) Nizamabad Zone( Nizamabad & Karimnagar districts) Godavari zone (East and west godabari districts) Agency Zone (Srikakulam & Vishakhapattanam districts). The major Turmeric producing districts in Karnataka are as follows: 1. Chamarajnagar Belgaum Mysore Bagalkote Gulbarga Turmeric 7

The major producing districts of Tamil Nadu are: 1. Erode Coimbatore Salem Namakkal Dharmapuri


The total area under turmeric has increased gradually over the past decade, and at the same time the production has also risen. The yield has varied from year to year over the decade rising and falling in alternate years.

(Source: Directorate of Economics and Statistics, New Delhi and State Departments of Economics & Statistics)

(Area: 000 ha, Production:000 tonnes, Yield : kg/ha) Total area under Turmeric in India rose gradually from 150 thousand hectares in 200203 to 186 thousand hectares in 200607. At the same time the production has also risen from 522 thousand MT in 200203 to 837 thousand MT in 200607. The yield increased from 3479 kg/ha in 200203 to 4952 kg/ha in 200506 and declined to 4501 kg/ha in 200607. In 200607 India had approximately 186 thousand hectares under Turmeric cultivation; within which Andhra Pradesh occupies the largest area coverage (36%) with 47% production share in India. That means Andhra Pradesh topped in both area and production of Turmeric.

Second largest area is covered by Tamil Nadu at 16% with a share in production in 21%. Other major states were turmeric is cultivated includes Orissa, Karnataka, West Bengal, Kerala etc.

Not only India is the largest producer of turmeric in the world but also largest consumer. Domestic consumption accounts for nearly 93%94% of total production.

Global scenerio

India accounts for about 78% of world turmeric production. India is the largest producer, consumer and exporter of Turmeric. Other producers in Asia include China, Bangladesh, Burma (Myanmar), and Nigeria. Turmeric is also produced in the Caribbean and Latin America: Jamaica, Haiti, Costa Rica, Peru, and Brazil. Major importers are the Middle East and North African countries, Iran, Japan and Sri Lanka. These importing countries represent 75% of the turmeric world trade, and are mostly supplied by the Asian producing countries Exports

United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the major importer of turmeric from India accounting for 18% of the total exports followed by United States of America (USA) with 8%. The other leading importers are Bangladesh, Japan, Sri Lanka, UK, Malaysia, South Africa, Netherlands and Saudi Arabia. All these countries together account for 75% of the world trade, and Asian countries supplies to the entire world. Remaining 25% is met by Europe and North America, Central and Latin American countries. United States imports 97% of its turmeric requirement from India and remaining portion from the Islands of the Pacific and Thailand. India exports Turmeric to other countries in a range of 56% of its total production since 1995 2005. Out of the production in India, 90% is consumed locally and the rest is exported. Still India accounts 60% of the world turmeric exports. Turmeric grown in Erode region is preferred for grinding but due to cross contamination of different varieties and improper postharvest practices followed, the acceptance level of Erode turmeric has declined sharply in the recent times. Now most of the turmeric produced in the Erode belt is used for domestic consumption and on the other hand, the quality of Salem turmeric is comparatively better and has acceptance in the international market for grinding and blending purposes. Import Occasional imports of Turmeric takes place in India with meager amount depending upon domestic production level of it. Latest data reveals that 1313 MT, 3005 MT & 1620 MT imported in during 200203, 200304 and 200405 years respectively. As per Spices Boards of India, 4025 MT of Turmeric was imported in 200506.

Domestic price scenario of turmeric

The above price data shows that Erode prices peaked in November 2003 and currently hover around above 2,000 levels, while the Sangli prices topped in February 2003. Sangli prices have remained above Erode prices since January 2006. Method of Processing Seed treatment Whole or split mother rhizomes are used for planting. Select well developed, healthy and disease free rhizomes. Treat the rhizomes in any of the copper oxychloride fungicides and store in cool, dry place or in earthen pits plastered with mud and cow dung. Cleaning Turmeric 13

Harvested turmeric rhizomes are cleaned off mud and other extraneous materials, adhering to them and subjected to curing within 23 days after harvest so as to ensure the quality of the end product. Boiling Fingers and mother rhizomes will have to be boiled separately. Boiling is usually done in MS pans of suitable size. Cleaned rhizomes (approximately 50 kg) are taken in a perforated trough of size 0.9 m x 0.55 m x 0.4 m made of GI or MS sheet with extended handle. The trough containing the rhizomes is then immersed in MS pan (1 m x 0.62 m x 0.48 m) containing clean water sufficient to immerse the rhizomes. The whole mass is boiled till the rhizomes become soft. The correct stage of cooking can be judged by piercing a wooden needle through the rhizome. If the rhizomes are properly cooked, the needle will pass through the rhizome without resistance. The cooked rhizomes are taken out of the pan by lifting the trough and draining the solution into the pan. Drying The fingers are then dried in the sun by spreading them as a thin layer on bamboo mats or drying floor. Artificial drying at a maximum temperature of 65C gives a bright coloured product than that of sun drying especially for sliced turmeric. Polishing In order to smoothen the rough and hard outer surface of the boiled dried turmeric and also to improve its colour, it is subjected to polishing. There are two types of polishing, hand polishing and machine polishing. Hand polishing: The method of hand polishing is simple, which consists of rubbing turmeric fingers on hard surface or trampling them under feet wrapped in gunny bags. The improved method is by using handoperated barrel or drum mounted on a central axis, the sides of which are made of expanded metal mesh. When the drum filled with turmeric is rotated, polishing is effected by abrasion of the surface against the mesh as well as by mutual rubbing against each other as they roll inside the drum. Turmeric 14

Machine polishing This method consists of an octagonal or hexagonal wooden drum mounted on a central axis and rotated by power. Colouring: Boiled, dried and half polished turmeric fingers (half polished turmeric is more suitable since colour does not stick to the rhizomes that have been polished fully to smooth finish) are taken in bamboo basket and shaken with turmeric powder. For coating 100 kg of half polished turmeric 200 g of turmeric powder is required. When fingers are uniformly coated with turmeric powder, they are dried in the sun. Turmeric oleoresin This is obtained by the solvent extraction of the ground spice with organic solvents like acetone, ethylene dichloride and ethanol for 45 hours. It is orange red in colour. Oleoresin yield ranges from 7.9 to 10.4 per cent. One kg of oleoresin replaces 8 kg of ground spice. Preservation of seed rhizomes Turmeric pigment is highly unstable as compared to the yellow synthetic colorant, tartrazine. However, if protected from light and humidity, the curcuminoid pigments in turmeric powder and oleoresin are stable. Therefore, turmeric rhizomes and powder should be stored away from light and in a very dry environment. Turmeric is stored in huge underground pits called pews. Each pew can store 175 quintals of the commodity for almost three years. There are over 2,100 such pews in Haripur and Sangalwadi in Maharashtras Sangli district the centre of turmeric trading. Rhizomes for seed purpose are generally stored by heaping in well ventilated rooms and covered with turmeric leaves. The seed rhizomes can also be stored in pits with saw dust, sand, leaves of Glycosmis pentaphylla (panal), etc. The pits are to be covered with wooden planks with one or two openings for aeration. The rhizomes are to be dipped in quinalphos 0.075% solution for 15 minutes if scale infestations are observed and in mancozeb 0.3% to avoid storage losses due to fungi. Turmeric 15

Need of Futures in Turmeric Turmeric is widely grown and consumed spice that has got good international market demand. A large group of market participants are engaged in different activity in the entire value chain of turmeric right from production to its consumption. Prices show considerable volatility that could pose profit risk to different stakeholders. At present there is no risk management tool available for the traders, farmers, industry, exporters to hedge their risk out of price uncertainty. As India is having major share in the international turmeric export market thus it is equally exposed to global uncertainly that affects trade time to time and thus on price. In such a scenario offering future trading would provide an opportunity to the hedge risk for market participants against volatile price movements. Turmeric price is quite volatile and showing marked fluctuations in daily price. Due to high volatility it reinforces the need of future trading to allow traders to hedge their risk. Other factors that indicate success of future trading is well developed spot market and large number of participants such as traders, farmers, exporters, industrial consumer etc that provide depth and width to the market.