International

India gives ‘rasgulla’ a geographical tag to end bitter rivalry

rasgulla

India has awarded a “geographical indications” tag to rasgulla, the king of Indian sweets, after a years-long battle between two neighboring states over the ownership rights.

Luscious rasgulla, or sweet cheese balls dripping with sugar syrup, have long been a favorite dessert across the Indian subcontinent and among the diaspora.

But two eastern states, West Bengal and Odisha, have been arguing over the origins of rasgulla, which means a ball of sweet. They consulted historians and produced old documents to support their claims.

On Tuesday, the federal commerce and industry ministry ruled that the sweet originated from West Bengal, giving it the coveted “geographical indications” tag.

The World Trade Organisation says “geographical indications” defines a good as originating in a particular territory of a member, or a region or locality in that territory, where a given quality, reputation or other characteristics of the good is available.

West Bengal’s chief minister Mamata Banerjee welcomed the decision saying in a Twitter post it was “sweet news for us all”.

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