Bhubaneswar, August 19 (LocalWire): With Rasagola being conferred the coveted Geographical Indication (GI) tag, the sweetmeat traders have sought government support for establishing commercially-viable, export-oriented units to showcase the traditional sweets of the state.
People from various walks of life today tasted the spongy, syrupy rasagolas as sweetmeat traders celebrated the GI tag at a fair in Jaydev Bhawan here to promote and popularise Rasagolas.
‘Sweetmeat makers from across the state took part in the fair.
We distributed around 60,000 rasagolas for free to enthusiastic visitors,’ Sujjet Poddar, secretary, Utkal Mistanna Byabasaee Samiti, said.
‘As GI tag on ‘Odishara Rasagola’ has provided the sweetmeat sector the much-needed national and overseas exposure, it’s high time the government agencies extend logistical and financial support for the growth of this neglected sector,’ he told Localwire.
‘The sweetmeat sector is an unorganized sector in Odisha unlike in neighbouring Bengal.
Time has now come to make it into an organized sector.
More than 30,000 sweet shops provide employment to more than 3 lakh families.
The sweetmeat sector is the highest buyers of milk products, at least 50 times more than what the state-run OMFED consumes,’ Poddar added.
He said the state should open a 100 percent export-oriented sweetmeat manufacturing unit.
‘We seek sweetmeat hubs where popular sweets will be showcased and attract tourists as in other states,’ he said.
‘We appeal to the Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (IDCOL) to provide us the required land as the growth of the sweetmeat sector will augment the income of lakhs of people,’ he added.