Indian spices and spice products surged to a record export growth worth Rs 17,664.61 crore ($2633.30 million) and a volume of 9,47,790 tonnes in 2016-17, sustaining their robust demand in international markets in the face of stiff competition. The buoyancy in exports of spices and related products, both in terms of value and volume, compares favourably with figures of 8,43,255 tonnes valued at Rs 16238.23 crore ($2482.83 million) in 2015-16,thereby registering an increase of 12 percent in volume,nine per cent in Rupee terms and six per cent in dollar terms, a Spices Board release said here today.
Chilli continued to be the most demanded spice in the 2016-17 financial year with exports of 4,00,250 tonnes amounting to Rs 5,070.75 crore, registering an increase of 15 percent in volume and 27 percent in value. Cumin was the second-most exported spice, recording an increase of 22 percent in volume and 28 percent in value. A total volume of 1,19,000 tonnes of cumin valued at Rs 1963.20 crore was exported from India in 2016-17. The increase was largely due to mandatory checks on cumin and its byproducts implemented by the Spices Board in the backdrop of rapid alerts from importing countries. “India has surpassed all previous export records and has fulfilled the increasing international demand for its quality spices in the face of tough competition in global markets.” “More satisfying was the fact that the appreciable increase in exports came in the face of strict food safety regulations that now define and determine the international commodity trade,” said Spices Board Chairman Dr A Jayathilak.
Increased global demand for turmeric, especially in the pharmaceutical sector, drove its exports to attain figures of 1,16,500 tonnes in volume and crossed Rs 1,241 crore in value terms in 2016-17. The spice which showed the maximum increase as compared to the previous financial year was fennel, registering a 129 percent increase in volume and 79 percent in value. Garlic exports contributed substantially to the overall growth during the year, notching figures of 92 per cent in value terms and 39 per cent in quantity. The export demand of nutmeg and mace was also on the higher side, registering an increase of 25 percent to 5,070 tonnes, as compared to 4,050 tonnes during 2015-16. Export of celery rose from 5,310 tonnes valued at Rs 53.28 crore in 2015-16 to 6,250 tonnes worth Rs 62.46 crore in 2016-17.
Jayathilak said efforts of the Spices Board to promote the production of large cardamom, especially in the country’s North Eastern region which is the organic area by default, led to a rise in its exports by 30 per cent in volume and nine per cent in value. A shift in dietary preferences from conventional spices to processed and value-added spices was evident in the spice export statistics, which exhibited an increase both in volume and value as compared to 2015-16, contributing substantially to the spices export basket in 2016-17.