Basmati

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Brown basmati rice

Basmati (Hindi: बासमती, Urdu: باسمتی) is a variety of long grain rice which is traditionally from South Asia.

History and etymology[edit]

Basmati is a Sanskrit word meaning "fragrant". Basmati rice has been cultivated in India for thousands of years and originates from India. Basmati was introduced to the Middle East by various Indian traders. Through cultural exchange, it remains not only an important part of various Indian cuisines but now is also used extensively in Persian and other Middle Eastern cuisines. Basmati Rice is considered to be the benchmark for all types of Rice. India continues to be the largest cultivator of this rice.

Production and cultivation[edit]

The areas of basmati rice production in India are in the states of Punjab, Haryana, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. India's total basmati production for the 2011/12 crop year that ended June was 5 million tonnes.[1] In Pakistan, 95% of the basmati rice cultivation takes place in the province of Punjab, where total production was 2.47 million tonnes in 2010.[2][3] In India, Haryana is the major basmati rice cultivating state, producing more than 60% of the total basmati rice produced in India.[4]

Flavour[edit]

Basmati rice has a typical pandan-like (Pandanus amaryllifolius leaf) flavour caused by the aroma compound 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline.[5]

Varieties and hybrids[edit]

There are several varieties of basmati rice. Traditional Indian types include basmati 370, basmati 385, and basmati Ranbirsinghpura (R.S.Pura). Pakistani varieties of basmati rice are PK 385, 1121 Extra Long Grain Rice, Super Kernel Basmati Rice and D-98.

Scientists at Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Delhi, genetically modified basmati to produce a hybrid semi-dwarf plant which had most of the good features of traditional basmati (grain elongation, fragrance, alkali content). This hybrid was called Pusa Basmati-1 (PB1; also called "Todal", because the flower has awns); crop yield is up to twice as high as traditional varieties. Fragrant rices that are derived from basmati stock but are not true basmati varieties include PB2 (also called sugandh-2), PB3, and RH-10.

List of approved varieties[edit]

1kg Indian Basmati Rice packet

Indian varieties[edit]

Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Safidon, Haryana, Kasturi (Baran, Rajasthan), Basmati 198, Basmati 217, Basmati 370, Bihar, Kasturi, Mahi Suganda, Pusa.

Pakistani varieties[edit]

Basmati 370, Super Basmati, Pak (Kernal) Basmati, Basmati 386, Basmati 385 and Basmati 198.[6]

Kenyan variety[edit]

A variety of Basmati called Pishori or Pisori is grown in the Mwea region of Kenya.[7]

American varieties[edit]

A variety of Basmati called Texmati is grown in the United States of America.

Adulteration[edit]

Difficulty in differentiating genuine basmati from other types of rice and the significant price difference between them has led fraudulent traders to adulterate basmati rice with crossbred basmati varieties and long-grain non-basmati varieties. In Britain, the Food Standards Agency found in 2005 that about half of all basmati rice sold was adulterated with other strains of long-grain rice, prompting rice importers to sign up to a code of practice.[8] A 2010 U.K. test on rice supplied by wholesalers found four out of 15 samples had cheaper rice mixed with basmati, and one had no basmati at all.[9]

A PCR-based assay similar to DNA fingerprinting in humans allows adulterated and non-basmati strains to be detected, with a detection limit from 1% adulteration upwards with an error rate of ±1.5%.[citation needed] Exporters of basmati rice use "purity certificates" based on DNA tests for their basmati rice consignments.[10] Based on this protocol, which was developed at the Centre for DNA Fingerprinting and Diagnostics, the Indian company Labindia has released kits to detect basmati adulteration.[11]

Patent battle[edit]

In September 1997 Texas, USA company RiceTec was granted U.S. Patent No. 5,663,484 on "basmati rice lines and grains." The patent secures lines of basmati and basmati-like rice and ways of analyzing that rice. RiceTec, owned by Prince Hans-Adam of Liechtenstein, faced international outrage over allegations of biopiracy. It had also caused a brief diplomatic crisis between India and United States with India threatening to take the matter to WTO as a violation of TRIPS which could have resulted in a major embarrassment for the United States.[12] Both voluntarily and due to review decisions by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, RiceTec lost or withdrew most of the claims of the patent, including, most importantly, the right to call their rice lines "basmati."[13] A more limited varietal patent was granted to RiceTec in 2001 on claims dealing with three strains of the rice developed by the company.[14]

Glycemic index[edit]

According to the Canadian Diabetes Association, basmati rice has a "medium" glycemic index (between 56 and 69), thus making it more suitable for diabetics as compared to certain other grains and products made from white flour.[15]

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ "India's to export record basmati rice in 2012/13 | Reuters". In.reuters.com. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  2. ^ Rice export: ‘Pakistan has potential of $4b but barely touches $1b’. The Express Tribune. February 8, 2012.
  3. ^ Global market: Pakistani basmati may slip down the pecking order. The Express Tribune. July 19, 2012.
  4. ^ http://drdpat.bih.nic.in/Downloads/Rice-in-India-during-10th-Plan.pdf
  5. ^ S. Wongpornchai, T. Sriseadka, S. Choonvisase (2003). "Identification and quantitation of the rice aroma compound, 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline, in bread flowers (Vallaris glabra Ktze)". J. Agric. Food. Chem. 51 (2): 457–462. doi:10.1021/jf025856x. PMID 12517110. 
  6. ^ "foodstandards.gov.uk" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  7. ^ Sanginga, P. C (2009). novation Africa: Enriching Farmers' Livelihoods. London: Earthscan. p. 391. ISBN 978-1-84407-671-0. 
  8. ^ "Contamination concerns force new Basmati regulations". Foodnavigator.com. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  9. ^ Rice, Tim (2010-01-29). "Probe finds fake basmati". This is Leicestershire. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  10. ^ http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/abstract/114280458/ABSTRACT and http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/abstract.cgi/jafcau/2007/55/i20/abs/jf0714517.html
  11. ^ Basmati Testing - Basmati Verifiler Kit. Labindia.
  12. ^ Basmati Case Study[dead link]
  13. ^ "Bid for patent for basmati rice hits a hurdle", The Hindu, November 5, 2006
  14. ^ "India-U.S. Fight on Basmati Rice Is Mostly Settled", The New York Times
  15. ^ "Canadian Diabetes Associate - The Glycemic Index" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-09-11. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]