Idukki Spice: In the Limelight


Everyone loves Idukki spices. Large numbers of netizens are searching for Idukki spices online and are also bustling in brick and mortar businesses. People take the trouble of flying from the other side of the globe to procure first quality products from the Idukki spice markets. So, what is the rave all about?

Let us get our facts straight, long before the advent of spice gardens in Idukki, the spice trade was active and thriving. Idukki has been captivating the imagination of spice lovers in India and abroad since the dawn of history. One could even argue that it was the Idukki wholesale spice markets that lead to the colonization of India. The British, and Europeans in general, wanted to control the spice trade that was under the monopoly of the Arabs. So, they set out to find India because of spices. And perhaps these spices, comparable to gold, which bought much prosperity during the ancient and middle ages, were the real reason for the modern ruin of the sub-continent. 

But let us not blame harmless plants for the horrible decisions of humankind. Cardamom and Black pepper were indigenous to Idukki. That is why kingdoms in the south became extravagantly wealthy. When the Europeans arrived, they took the plants and sowed their seeds in Latin America, the Philippines, and Indonesia. But why is Idukki spice among one of the most desirable and praiseworthy food produce world-over? 

The secret can be tasted and sniffed out by your senses. Even though these spices are extensively cultivated in many parts of the world today, they still lack the refined flavor and aroma of Idukki’s produce. Particularly, the strains grown in Munnar have an exceptional quality to them. Many tourists praise Munnar spices after they had some fine dining at a spice village, long after they get home. The reason behind this phenomenon, this distinct taste is the land and the weather. Spices of Munnar are part of a unique ecosystem on the Western Ghats. The flora here is unique, and most of the life forms here were unique to the valley. Farmers and corporation’s world over have tried to compete with Idukki valley spices. Why? Because it is impossible to mimic soil and air qualities, altitudes, and most importantly, the weather.

 Idukki spices have been in the limelight for thousands of years and millions of spice farmers and spice shops thrive in the region. Yet, we enter a time of great adversity when rapid climate change is threatening the fauna and flora of the land. If temperatures increase any further, the hills would be inhospitable for spice-bearing plants leading to the extinction of certain species and the destruction of the livelihoods of millions of farmers and traders worldwide. So please, enjoy the food, travel the land but do your part in saving the planet.





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