A geographical indication (GI) is a name or sign used on products that correspond to a specific geographical location or origin (e.g., a town, region, or country).

In order to function as a GI, a sign must identify a product as originating in a given place.

A geographical indication right enables those who have the right to use the indication to prevent its use by a third party whose product does not conform to the applicable standards.

Out of all the GI Tags registered in India, Maharashtra state owns 34 GIs.
Solapur Chaddar and Solapur Terry Towel are two products first time registered as GI from Maharashtra from April 2005 to March 2006. The second product is Puneri Pagadi registered as a GI in 2009 -2010.

Some of the GI tags in agriculture from Maharashtra are given below:

1. Ambemohar Rice

Ambemohar which literally means mango blossom in Marathi is one of the most famous non–basmati rice types grown exclusively in the Maval region of Pune district. The rice thrives in Mulshi taluka which is surrounded by the Sahyadri.
   This short-grained rice has a unique sweet taste and an aroma that is very much like the mango blossom when cooked. This rice is soft in texture, easily digestible, with about 70 percent starch and takes less time for cooking.

2. Jalgaon Banana

Jalgaon District is an identified banana cluster under the Agri Export Policy and is called as “Banana city” of Maharashtra. It contributes to two-thirds of the total production of bananas in the state.
   Jalgaon is the seventh biggest producer of bananas in the world. Its average yield is 70 tonnes per hectare, which is quite high than the global levels.

3. Waigaon Turmeric

Waigaon Turmeric is a traditional crop in Samudrapur tehsil of Wardha district. This is a unique variety that matures in a short period and is grown under rainfed condition. 
   Approximately 80% of the farmers from Waigaon village have cultivated turmeric for generations. The color of Waigaon turmeric is a dark mustard yellow as compared to other turmeric varieties.
The high Curcumin content is the key ingredient that lends Waigaon Turmeric its distinctive yellowness. Waigaon Turmeric has 6.12% Curcumin content.

4. Vengurla Cashew

Sindhudurg district has the largest area under cashew cultivation as it has the ideal climate to produce good-quality cashews. Cashew processing units found in Sindhudurg are more than a hundred years old with the first plant established in Vengurla in 1920. 
   Vengurla cashew has a distinctive kidney-shaped kernel, is creamy-white in color and delightfully sweet. The size and weight of the kernel increase from varieties V1 to V7. Approximately 6.5 lakh hectares of land are under cashew cultivation in India of which 1.5 lakh hectares is in Maharashtra.

5. Navapur Tur Dal

Navapura tur dal also known as white tur for its shiny golden white colour. This indigenous crop is locally called desi tur, gawran tur, pandhari tur, Diwali tur and khokali.
   Navapur is surrounded by hills and is located at the starting point of the Satpura Range. The average rainfall varies between 1200 mm to 1300 mm and the average temperature is between 27 °C to 30 °C. It is the hilly terrain and good rainfall that helps to maintain the coolness in the atmosphere. The superior quality of Navapur tur dal is attributed to its favorable agro-climatic conditions.

6. Purandar Fig

80 percent of the fig produced in Maharashtra comes from Purandar alone which is known as Anjir Aagat.
The different varieties cultivated are Poona fig, Marsels, Dienna, Dinkar, Black Ichia, Brown Tukrye, Conadriya and Excel.

7. Mangalwedha Jowar

Popularly known as the ‘Land of Saints’, Mangalwedha taluka in Solapur district.
The local variety of Jowar known as Maldandi Jowar has been cultivated here for at least 500 years if not more for grain and fodder use in each and every village in Mangalwedha taluka.
It is sweet to taste as it contains a high percentage of glucose as against other varieties of Jowar.

8. Ajara Ghansal rice

Ajara Ghansal rice grown in Ajara tehsil which is surrounded by Sahyadri or the Western Ghats has been titled as ‘King of Paddy’.
The most important trait of Ghansal is its heady aroma. Studies have shown that the aroma of this rice comes from a mixture of many compounds like alcohols, aldehydes, esters etc. and the high percentage of 2AP (2-Acetyl-1-pyrroline).

9.Dahanu Gholvad Chikoo

The fruit is known for its sweet and unique taste and it is believed that the unique taste is derived from calcium calcium-rich soil of Gholvad village. In the Palgahr district, around 5,000 hectares of land are under sapota plantation.

10. Nashik valley wine

Nashik Valley wine is produced from several vineyards and the Sula wine is one of the major producers of Wines in Nashik. The wine is produced in two types: red and white. The district has 52 wineries in operation and consequently, Nashik is occasionally known by the epithet "The Wine Capital of India".

Madhumita Mote (MBA Agri, College of Agriculture Pune)