Berhampur: With the changing times and ever shifting consumer choices, some of the traditional food items have seen a decreasing patronage. One such item is the Kanti Guda of Ganjam district which used to be the mainstay of traditional sweet making in all households.
Though crystal sugar has taken its place, Kanti Guda has its own charm and people still want to use it in their day to day cooking.
Seeing the demand and need to reposition its lost glory, the Ganjam district administration has come forward and is helping Women Self Help Group members to produce this desi organic jaggery.
The administration has helped revive two traditional Kanti Guda making units in Gangapur Panchayat of Aska Block operated by Mahalaxmi Self Help Group Members. Collector Vijay Amrit Kulange inaugurated the unit on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
The fully organic jaggery oproduced by the SHG will be branded and marketed by Ganjam Grihini Producer company. The thrust is on procducing high quality jaggery from the sugar cane available locally so that the farmers will also get benefitted. The producer SHGs will make jaggery in liquid, solid and powder form according to the demand. While at present the SHGs have a capacity to produce 1.5 tons of jaggery per day using 7 tons of sugar cane, it is going to be doubled in the near future. This has also started giving good income to the Women members as the per day profit comes at about Rs 13500.
Speaking on the initiative, Shinde Dattatraya Bhausaheb, Project Director, DRDA said that “this is a big step forward in reviving the lost tradition with livelihood support for women SHGs. On the occasion of International Women’s Day, this is a tribute to women empowerment in Ganjam.”