India is the largest producer, consumer, and exporter of Turmeric in the world. India’s share in world turmeric production stands at around 80%. Also, close to 60% of World’s turmeric exports originate in India. Turmeric powder possesses antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties and forms a part of many ayurvedic and home remedies for common ailments. The health benefits of turmeric are now being recognized the world over. Turmeric milk is fast becoming a drink of choice for the health aware consumers around the globe. Many companies have launched turmeric pill supplements for health-conscious consumers.
Adulterants added to turmeric:
Common adulterants added to turmeric are fillers like sawdust or chalk, and coloring agents like lead chromate, or metanil yellow.
Tests to detect the presence of adulterants in turmeric:
It is difficult to check for the presence of sawdust in turmeric through a direct test at home. However, since sawdust receives its color from that of the wood, it is often added to turmeric along with a coloring agent. The test for the coloring agent can confirm the presence of sawdust.
Chalk powder is added not only to turmeric but also to many other Indian spices. Since it is calcium carbonate, it reacts with any acidic substance. To check for the presence of chalk in any spice, add a little amount of Vinegar to the spice. An effervescence will confirm the presence of chalk.
Take a little amount of turmeric powder in a clear glass. Add a small amount of Vinegar to it. The color should change to Pink. Now add a small amount of water. If the pink color disappears, turmeric is pure. Otherwise Metanil yellow is present in turmeric.
Take water in a clear glass. Add a pinch of turmeric powder. Streaks of yellow color will indicate the presence of Lead Chromate.
Gaurav is an entrepreneur whose first Start-up was focused on providing services to patients suffering from Chronic Diseases. While researching about the causes of lifestyle diseases and the ways to reduce their incidence, he chanced upon the idea of growing healthy and nutritious food using advanced farming techniques.
He founded CityGreens with a mission to enable City Dwellers to access Safe, Healthy and Fresh food.