Nepal exports more than 6000 metric tonnes of ginger annually

The Trade and Export Promotion Centre (TEPC) is all set to register a collective trademark of ginger at the Department of Industry (DoI) to open the gate for trademark registration in major export destinations and boost its export by branding the product.

“Ginger will be branded as ‘Himalayan Ginger’ in the international market,” said Ishwori Ghimire, executive director of TEPC. “Trademark registration in the local market paves the way for trademark registration, branding and marketing of the product in export destinations.”

TEPC has said that trademark registration of ginger was also listed in the priority list of TEPC in the previous fiscal, but the producers and traders were not yet ready back then. While registering the trademark, 70 per cent of the cost would be borne by the government and the remainder from the association of traders and producers.

“Single ownership of the brand by producers and traders is preferred,” Ghimire told The Himalayan Times. Earlier, the DoI had urged for a single ownership of the collective trademark of Nepali carpets — registered in July this year — which is jointly owned by Central Carpet Industries Association and Nepal Carpet Exporters Association.

However, producers and traders of ginger have formed a single association, Nepal Ginger Producers and Traders Association, which has been lobbying for the trademark registration of ginger.

“The association has been lobbying for trademark registration for the last three years,” said Narendra Khadka, president of the association, adding, “We can better market our products that have unique features once the trademark is registered in export destinations.”

The government has prioritised the process of registering trademarks of exportable products in the international market and earmarked a budget for that purpose and TEPC has been authorised to do the needful. However, things are moving at a snail’s pace.

Ginger is one of the export priority products listed under Nepal Trade Integration Strategy (NTIS) 2010 as well. However, export of ginger fell heavily in the previous fiscal to 2,041 tonnes which was worth Rs 449.9 million.

In the fiscal 2012-13, a total of 6,284 tonnes of ginger worth more than Rs one billion had been exported. Exports dropped last year due to very low demand from the major export destination — India. Likewise, the sanitary and phytosanitary measures enforced by the southern neighbour also discouraged exports.

Among the products listed under NTIS, ginger has received ‘Tier 2’ support from the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF). The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is executing the ‘Tier 2’ project of ginger that is being run under the supervision of the Ministry of Commerce and Supplies (MoCS) and it is expected that enhancing the quality of ginger could fetch better price and less quarantine hurdles on exports being faced in the past.

Earlier, TEPC had registered the trademark of coffee, pashmina, carpet and black cardamom. Trademark of pashmina has also been registered in some export destinations, whereas International Trade Centre has been working on the branding and marketing of pashmina under the ‘Tier 2’ support of EIF to implement the NTIS. TEPC has said that it has prioritised to register the trademark of exportable products in export destinations at the earliest.

Major points

• Ginger to be branded as ‘Himalayan Ginger’ in the international market

• 70 per cent of cost of registering trademark to be borne by govt

• Association of traders and producers to bear the remaining 30 per cent cost of registration

- Courtesy of Himalayan