Odisha's Red Ant Chutney Earns GI Tag

by - Ravisha Poddar

Local Delicacy

Red Weaver Ant Chutney often called Similipal Kai Chutney is a savoury chutney from Mayurbhanj, Odisha. It embodies cultural significance and offers medicinal and nutritional value.

Formidable Ants

Red weaver ants (Oecophylla smaragdina) may not possess a sting, yet their bites cause intense discomfort, releasing formic acid often leading to blistering.

Natural Pest Control

Recognized as bio-control agents, they defend their territory, preying on arthropods. They safeguard tropical crops, offering an eco-friendly alternative to chemical insecticides.

Nutrient-Rich Blend

Combining red ants with chillis, garlic, ginger, and salt, this chutney is a nutrient powerhouse. It's rich in protein, calcium, zinc, vitamin B-12, iron, magnesium, and more.

Prestigious GI Tag

Awarded on January 2, 2024, by DPIIT, Ministry of Commerce, the GI Tag safeguards the chutney's authenticity, ensuring adherence to specific standards in all related products.

Tribal Livelihood

Around 500 tribal families sustain themselves by collecting and selling these insects. The chutney fetches high demand and prices, reaching up to Rs 1,000 per kg at village markets.

Insect Protein Potential

Research supports insect integration in diets as an eco-friendly protein source with promising health benefits and potential solutions to looming environmental challenges.

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