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Agriculture > Spices > Ginger

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Ginger

The quality of products of ginger depends on the variety used and cultivation practices. Appropriate variety has to be selected for various end products such as dry ginger, raw ginger oil and oleoresin etc.

Raw/dry ginger

Himachal, Maran, Mananthody, Kuruppampady, etc. are good varieties to prepare dry ginger. Rio-de-Janeiro, China, Wynad, Varada etc are good varieties for raw ginger. Only recommended doses of pesticides and other chemicals should be applied so as to avoid residues. Ginger rhizomes should be thoroughly cleaned before peeling. Extreme care is necessary while peeling to prevent the loss of volatile oil. Wooden scarpers or bamboo stick is ideal for peeling. Knives or sickles, may leave dark spots. Ginger can be dried on clean bamboo mats or cement floor. Depending on the availability of sunlight full drying period may vary from 7-14 days. Desirable moisture level is 10%. Above this may cause development of aflatoxin. Collect the dried ginger in air proof polyethylene bags and stack on wooden pieces.

Rhizomes affected with rot should not be used for preparing dry ginger. Do not fumigate stored dry ginger without consulting experts as many importing countries imposed ban on fumigated materials. Mixing of fully dried ginger with half dried ones may be avoided as it will damage both the materials. Rodents, birds, pests and animals should not be allowed in the area where ginger is stored. The major Indian trade types are Cochin and Calicut ginger. Cochin ginger is more superior in quality. Appearance, contents of volatile oil and fibre, pungency level and a subjective assessment of aroma and flavour are important in the quality evaluation of dried ginger. This depends on the cultivar, stage of maturity at harvest etc. Oil and oleoresin decreases as maturity progress.

Ginger oil

It varies from 1.3 to 3.0%. Oil possesses only the aroma and not the flavour of the spice.The major use of ginger oil is as flavouring agent for beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic.

Ginger oleoresin

It is a blend of oil and resinoides. It is extracted from ginger powder using organic solvents like acetone, ethylene dichloride etc. Its content range from 3.5 to 10 %. Major pungent principle gingerol (a phenyl ketone). Ginger oleoresin is a dark brown viscous liquid responsible for the flavour and pungency of the spice.

Fresh ginger products

Ginger preserve or Muraba, ginger candy, soft drinks like ginger cocktail (which aids in digestion), ginger pickles, salted ginger, salted in vinegar or vinegar mixed with lime, green chillies etc.

 

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