Goa Celebrates GI Tags For Bebinca, Mankurad Mangoes And More

Goa is known as a global tourist destination for many reasons, including the nightlife, and beaches but for many, the biggest appeal is the food. The wealth of natural produce and cultural influences make Goan cuisine unique among the diverse Indian palate. This identity has just been recognised on an official level by the Geographical Indication Registry in Chennai which as of July 2023, has awarded GI tags to Goa’s Bebinca and Mankurad Mangoes.

In addition to this GI Tags have been awarded to Agsechi Vayingim (Brinjals from Agasaim) and Sat Shiro Bheno (Lady Finger) bringing the state’s total tag holding up to nine as they previously held tags for Feni, Khola Chilli, Harmal Chilli, Myndoli Banana and Goan Khaje.

Geographical Indication (GI) tags are special as they’re awarded to highlight and protect the traditional knowledge, craftsmanship, and distinct characteristics of products that owe their quality, reputation, or other attributes to their geographical location. They’re typically awarded for 10 years and can be periodically renewed.

It’s a proud moment for the state as Bebinca is one of their most famous desserts and has over the years become synonymous with the cuisine. The layered cake is made with simple ingredients like eggs, coconut milk, sugar, flour, and ghee but requires a lot of skill to get right. Mankurad Mangoes are also known as Goa Alphonso’s due to their sweet, juicy flesh. The name was originally ‘malcorada’, which means poor coloured in Portuguese, but was later adapted to the Konkani ‘mankurad aamo’. 

The GI Tag applications were submitted as follows: The All Goa Bakers and Confectioners Association, Colva, submitted the application for Bebinca, and the All Goa Mango Growers Association, Panjim, applied for the Mankurad Mango. The Agasaim Brinjal Growers and Sellers Association submitted for Agsechi Vayingim and the Goa Local Vegetables and Tubers Growers Association filed the application for Sat Shiro Bheno.

All 4 of these items are so uniquely Goan and their recognition marks a rise of localised produce something that has been a great concern to locals as the state becomes more of a tourist hub. These GI tags are sure to draw attention to the wealth of native history and the potential to share these cultural gems with the world.