Coffee estate takeover
by Redaktion (comments: 0)
Major buyers of organic products from Germany, Japan and USA are seeking diplomatic intervention to help overturn the Kerala state government's takeover of the Thuthampara POABS organic estate in Palakkad district, the only Demeter-certified biodynamic organic coffee estate in the country.
While German buyer Ulrich Walter (picture) has approached Indian ambassador Meera Shankar in Germany expressing regret over the state government's decision, the Japanese buyer, Volcafe Limited, voiced its concern to India's ambassador in Tokyo HK Singh.
It stated that it would be a great pity to lose the high quality organic robusta coffee it had been receiving from POABS as production has been halted at its internationally certified organic estate. Ulrich Walter was importing organic products such as tea, coffee and pepper worth Rs 2.5 crore from POABS annually since 2003.
John Cossette, vice-president of US buyer Royal Coffee, has sought help from US ambassador to India David C Mulford in New Delhi, to ensure supply of organic products to the company does continue.
These representations followed communications sent by the POABS Group to the importers of the situations prevailing in the state resulting from the recent government decision not to return the Thuthampara estate to the POABS Group after the expiry of lease period.
The 350-acre Thuthampara estate at Nelliampathy in Palakkad district, which was in possession of the POABS Group since 1995, was one of the only two largest Biodynamic organic estates in the world and the only one in India.
Jacob said it took more than 10 years to develop these organic products, which were acceptable to the quality-conscious Western market, as they were certified by international agencies.
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