‘God’s gift’ from spice plant – Tea company sets up largest facility in Kaliabor

Amalgamated Plantations Private Limited (APPL), the second largest tea-producing company in the country, will be offering its spice products under the brand name Anshi.

Anshi means “God’s gift” in Sanskrit.

Amalgamated Spice Park

The company commissioned Amalgamated Spice Park, the largest spice-processing plant in the Northeast which is housed at a state government industrial facility at Kaliabor in Nagaon district on July 29.

Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi inaugurated the project. Besides this, he also inaugurated three more projects of the company.

A senior official of the APPL said in order to be more customer-centric and offer some of its products directly to end-consumers, it has decided to market them under the umbrella brand Anshi.

“It would encapsulate and connote everything that the APPL’s products would offer. Its place of origin and the resultant goodness in health and taste that only natural foods can promise,” he said.

The unit is spread across 6.2 bighas with a built-up area of 30,000 square feet.

“The Spice Park aims to promote the indigenous spices of the Northeast through fair price, value additions and creating market linkages in domestic and international markets for the spice-farming fraternity,” the official said.

It will have three processing lines – one for tuber spices like ginger and turmeric, second for seed spices like black pepper, coriander, mustard and the third one for chilli processing.

Many of the spices have been sourced from spice-specific clusters identified at various locations in the region.

The company at present grows only black pepper and has planted over three lakh trees.

“In the next two years, this figure will be approximately seven lakh trees. The current production is 40 tonnes and on maturity this figure will exceed 600 tonnes,” the official said.

Black pepper is the most-traded spice in the world. It is known as the king of spices for its hot, biting flavour and pungent aroma.

The plan at present is to sell spices to manufacturers across the country. Spices would be available at its kiosks in Assam and the Dooars. Exports will be planned at a later stage.

“The unit has been designed to address sustainability issues through initiatives in water and waste management, use of alternative sources of energy and landscaping for improving air quality,” the official said.

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Student power to the rescue of garbage-ridden city

A separate bin for the waste paper, cardboard, plastics, metal and glass your family generates daily – it is not rocket science and it considerably helps to reduce the problem of waste disposal in the city. A step like this helps isolate what amounts to 700 grams of the 2.6 kg of garbage generated by a four-member family.

And if every single home insists on recycling, nearly 1,000 tonnes of the 4,000 tonnes of garbage that the city generates daily will be fruitfully utilised, said Joga Rao, Divisional Head, Commercial, ITC’s Paperboards and Specialty Division. He was addressing a large group of school principals and teachers on Saturday to seek their support in taking the company’s Wealth Out of Waste (WOW) initiative to more schools.

Students of around 40 schools in the city already participate in the programme to segregate garbage at homes and bring the recyclables to schools that the company collects for use in its paper mills. The WOW initiative in Chennai is two years old and on July 1, the company will celebrate Recyclable Day in which over 15,000 students are expected to participate. It now plans to expand the project to around 200 schools. Children are repaid in cash or with stationary from ITC for their efforts.

C.V. Shankar, Principal Secretary to Department of Environment, said that it was necessary to keep garbage generated in the city in the respective wards only. “There are 200 wards and no space to dump. It is necessary for every resident to reduce, recycle and reuse,” he said. Mr. Shankar said that the necessity to clean roads and other public spaces on a daily basis arose because the public keeps littering.

Chand Das, chief executive, ITC’s Education and Stationery Products Business, said that the company had involved local residents and greened 1.25 lakh hectares of land. The Company was presented the 2012 World Business and Development Award for its transformational rural initiatives in social and farm forestry programmes at the Rio+20 United Nations Summit at Rio de Janeiro, he said.

Retrieved from – http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/article3563448.ece