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Last updated on 15-12-2016, 09:43





Spices Board was constituted in 1987 under Spices Board Act 1986 with the responsibility of production/development of cardamom and export promotion of 52 spices shown in the schedule of the Act. We function to develop, promote and regulate export of spices, grant certificate for export of spices, undertake programmes and projects for promotion of export of spices, assist and encourage studies and research for improvement of processing, quality, techniques of grading and packaging of spices, strive towards stabilization of prices of spice export, evolve suitable quality standards and introduce certification of quality through "Quality Marking" for spices for export, control quality of spices for export, give licenses, subject to such terms and conditions as may be prescribed to the manufacturers of spices for export, market any spice, if it considers necessary, in the interest of promotion of export, provide warehousing facilities abroad for spices, collect statistics with regard to prices for compilation and publication, import with previous approval of Central Government any spice for sale and advise the Central Government on matters relating to import and export of spices.


We are committed to act with integrity and judiciousness, transparency in our operations & accountability and with courtesy and understanding in our dealings with the exporters, the farming community and the general public as a whole. All the services and commitments will be honoured, without the citizen having to pay any bribe.


We will continuously strive to evolve procedures in fulfilling or mandate ensuring maximum benefit to the exporters as an honest and sincere facilitator, helping the farming community in post harvest technologies, in maintaining international quality standards of their produce by setting up Quality Evaluation Laboratories easily accessible both for the exporters as well as farmers and the general public as well as in grading, cleaning, packaging and ware housing of the produce of the farming community by setting up parks exclusively for Spices. We are committed to simplify, if necessary, various rules in force. We shall continuously consult our client groups, exporters/farmers, other stake holders of Indian Spice Industry and shall give timely publicity to all changes in law or procedures relevant to the Board


Development Wing



a)Schemes for Export Oriented Production

Spices Board is responsible for the overall development of cardamom (small & large) in terms of improving production, productivity and quality. The Board is also implementing post-harvest improvement programmes for production of quality spices for export. The various development programmes and post-harvest quality improvement programmes of the Board are implemented under the scheme ‘Export Oriented Production’.

The Board provides assistance/supports stakeholders for Replanting of Small & Large cardamom; Certified nursery for Small& Large cardamom; Dryers for Small & Large cardamom; Mechanization in Small & Large cardamom; Irrigation structures, equipments & Rain water harvesting in Small & Large cardamom; Mint distillation Units; Nutmeg dryers; Pepper & Seed Spice Threshers; Turmeric boilers & polishers; Construction of Vermi compost Units; Developing Organic seed bank; Organic Certification; Cultivation of Lakadong turmeric & Ginger in North East; Assistance for Internal Control System(ICS) etc

b)Extension Advisory

Spices Board imparts transfer of technical know-how to growers on production and post harvest improvement of spices which is an important factor for increasing the productivity and improving the quality of spices.

The programme envisages technical/extension suport through personal contacts, extension field visits, group meetings and distribution of literature in spice growing regions/states.

c)Quality Improvement Training Programme

Spices Board’s flagship programme is to transfer of technology from lab to land on production and post harvest improvement of spices to growers, traders, Govt. officials.

The Board is regularly conducting qualityimprovement training programmes forfarmers, officials of State Agri./Horti.Department, traders, members of NGOs,etc. for educating them on scientific methods of pre and post harvest & storage technologies and updated quality requirements for major spices.

d)Social Security Programme

Spices Board facilitates formation and registration of Spice Producer Societies with the Board under Social Security Programme.

The Board implements Plantaion Welfare scheme to support for the welfare of the children of plantation labourers

The Board extends financial assistance to the Spice Producer Societies to install common infrastructure facilities for spice processing and value addtion.

The Board extends stipend to the children of plantation workders and provides grant-in-aid for improving the essential facilities to the medical / educational institutions.


The Board encourages cardamom growers (both Small and Large) by giving productivity awards.

The Board recognizes the Small and Large cardamom growers by giving away the producitivity awards which consists of cash prize, citation and certificate. There will be one first prize and two second prizes of which one is exclusively for women grower.

The Board has also started recognising Organic Cardamom Growers with Organic Small cardamom Awards.

Details regarding Schemes for Export Oriented Production, Extension advisory, Quality improvement training, Social security programme and Awards for cardamom productivity can be accessed from Spices Board website --> Development

Information on Public Interfaces of Spices Board

Area of Public Interface

(Schemes, Licenses, Grievances, Testing, other interfaces etc)


Development Schemes

Large cardamom replanting – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Small cardamom replanting – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Large cardamom certified nursery – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Small cardamom certified nursery – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Large cardamom Dryer – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Small cardamom dryer – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Large cardamom Mechanization – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Small cardamom Mechanization – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Large cardamom irrigation structure – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Large cardamom irrigation equipment – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Large cardamom rain water harvesting – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Small cardamom irrigation structure – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Small cardamom Irrigation equipments – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Small cardamom rain water harvesting – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Mint distillation – Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh

Nutmeg dryer – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu

Pepper thresher – Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Seed spice thresher – Gujarath, Mardhya Pradesh and Rajasthan

Turmeric boiler – Andhra Pradesh, Aizawl, Assam, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Telangana

Turmeric polisher – Andhra Pradesh, Aizawl, Assam, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Telangana

Construction of Vermi compost – Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Organic seed bank – Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim and West Bengal

Cultivation of Lakadong turmeric – Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Tripura and Manipur

Cultivation of North East Ginger – Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Tripura and Manipur

Organic Certification – Spice growing regions/states

Assistance for Internal Control System (ICS) – Spice growing regions/states

Extension Advisory

Extension visits – Spice growing regions/states

Group meetings – Spice growing regions/states

Quality Improvement Training Programmes

Growers Training

Traders Training

Masters Training

Market Linkage

Regional Seminar – Spice growing regions/states

Social Security


Plantation Welfare – Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu (Stipend to children of plantaion worker and grant-in-aid for improving essential facilities in medial / educational institutions) and North East

Spice producer societies – Formation and registration with the Spices Board and extending financial assistance to Common Infrastructure

Major Activities to facilitate users by Development Wing – in tabular format. click the link

Marketing Wing


The export development & promotional programmes are formulated and implemented by the Marketing department of the Board. The programmes are aimed at equipping the exporters to have necessary competitive edge in sustaining and increasing export markets for Indian spices. The market development activities of the Board have their focus on quality, value addition and technology transfer/upgradation.

The quality specifications stipulated by the buying countries are disseminated to the exporters on a continuous basis. Exporters are also given updated information on the opportunities emerging in different markets, new uses & applications in food and non-food sectors by conducting market studies.

The various programmes being implemented under the scheme 'Export Development and Promotion' intend to support exporters, for boosting the export of spices and spice products from India. Besides encouraging adoption of scientific practices, the Board focuses on ensuring quality and food safety in the entire supply chain of spices. The major thrust areas are Trade Promotion, Product Development & Research, Promotion of Indian spice brands abroad, Setting up of infrastructure for common cleaning, grading, processing, packing and storing (Spices Park) in major spice growing/marketing centres, organizing Buyer Seller Meets etc. Special programmes are also undertaken for the spice sector of the North Eastern Region.

The following assistances are given to exporters/for export promotion.

a. Setting up Spices Processing Units in NE region.

The Board proposes to assist exporters in establishing primary processing facilities for spices in the NE region. The grant in aid offered under the scheme will be 33 per cent of the cost of processing facilities/ equipments subject to a maximum of Rs.50 lakhs for exporters and 50 per cent of the cost of processing facilities subject to a maximum of Rs.50 lakhs for Farmers' groups/Farmer Producer Companies having valid CRES. For SC/ST exporters, Farmers' groups and Farmer Producer Companies (for groups / FPCs the members should be from SC/ST Community) having valid CRES, the assistance will be 75 per cent of the cost of processing facilities /equipments subject to a maximum of Rs.112.50 lakhs.

b. Sending business samples abroad

The Board assists exporters who wish to finalize business transactions on the basis of samples requested by buyers and reimburses the courier charges for sending business samples abroad. Sending business samples enable better and speedy conversion of prospective buyers to actual customers in the spices export scenario. All exporters, whose first registration with Spices Board is within three years, are eligible for availing benefit under this programme. The assistance will be 50% of the cost of courier charges subject to a maximum of Rs.1.00 lakh as grant-in-aid per annum.

c.Packaging development & bar coding registration.

The program envisages improvement and modernization of export packaging for increasing shelf life and reducing storage space, establishing traceability and better presentation of Indian spices in the markets abroad. Registered exporters can avail assistance to the tune of 50 per cent of the cost of packaging development and bar coding registration subject to a ceiling of Rs.1.00 lakh per exporter.

d. Product Development & Research.

The scheme aims at scientific validation of nutritional, nutraceutical, cosmeceutical, medicinal and intrinsic properties of the spices, with a view to enable further development of new spice based products. The returns from exports of such new products and formulations would be phenomenally higher than the value realized by exporting whole spices with minimal value addition. Development of new end products from spices involve scientific research in the areas of unconventional applications, which can further lead to creation of patentable products with higher potential for exports. The scheme offers financial assistance for product research & development, clinical trials, validation of properties and patenting & test marketing. Registered exporters and R&D institutions having required facilities will be eligible to avail assistance under the scheme, to the tune of 50 per cent of the cost of project subject to a maximum of Rs.25.00 lakh. If clinical trials and patenting are involved, the ceiling will be Rs.100 lakhs.

e.Promotion of Indian spice brands abroad (Brand Promotion Scheme).

The objective of the programme is to assist penetration of Indian brands in the identified overseas markets, through a series of promotional programs. Under this programme, exporters who have registered their brand will be provided financial assistance towards interest free loan of upto Rs.100 lakhs per brand. Assistance under the program will cover 100 percent of slotting / listing fee & promotional expenditure and 50 per cent of the cost of product development, so as to help the exporters to position specified brands in the identified outlets in selected cities abroad.

f. Participation in international trade fairs/exhibitions/ meetings and trainings.

The Board is an international link between the Indian exporters and the importers abroad. As part of its initiatives for promotion of Indian spices in international markets and to provide opportunities for exporters, the Board is regularly participating in international fairs, exhibitions etc to showcase the capabilities of Indian spices to the international buyers. The Board also arranges cooking demonstrations in select exhibitions, food festivals etc, to popularize the uses and applications of spices, in collaboration with leading restaurants and food chains, so as to promote Indian cuisine. Besides, the Board participates in annual meetings, conferences of International Pepper Community (IPC), Codex Committees etc.

The Board also encourages exporters to participate in international fairs/exhibitions to generate/ develop business. The scheme aims at encouraging exporters, particularly MSME exporters to participate in international fairs/exhibitions to generate/ develop business. The airfare for participation in international events will be reimbursed as per the Market Access Initiative (MAI) Scheme, 2018 of Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Govt, of India.

Other Activities of the marketing wing:

a)Marketing Services

Spices Board is implementing a series of programmes to develop and promote the export of spices and spice products from India and to strengthen the domestic marketing of cardamom. The Board assists stakeholders on a day to day basis to sort out various issues faced with regard to post-harvest management, marketing, processing, quality improvement etc of spices and provides advice and technical support to exporters, farmers and State Governments.

b)Registration & Licensing

Licensing and Registration forms a part of the regulatory functions of the Board. The exports of spices are regulated through the Spices Board (Registration of Exporters) Regulations 1989 while the domestic marketing of cardamom is regulated through Cardamom (Licensing & Marketing) Rules 1987. As per these rules, any person desirous of doing business in cardamom as auctioneer or dealer has to obtain a license. The exporters of spices have to obtain certificates of registration from the Board. These certificate/licenses are issued for a block period of three years.

Sl No.

Type of services

Time frame

Charges if any/remarks


Certificate of Registration as Exporter of Spices (CRES)

Minimum 10 days from the date of receipt of application.

1.Manufacturer Exporter Licence – Rs. 17,700/- (Rs.15,000/- + 18% GST)

2.Merchant Exporter Licence – Rs.11,800/- (Rs. 10,000/- + 18% GST)


Cardamom Dealer Licence (CDL)

CDL will be issued after unit/godown inspection of the firm. Minimum 10 days from the date of receipt of application.

Rs.11,800/- (Rs. 10,000/- + 18% GST)


Cardamom Auctioneer Licence

c)Registration of Brand name

The objective of the program is to register the brand names of exporters, who export spices/spice products in branded consumer packs. The registration of brand name is offered for a period of three years, after confirming compliance with specific parameters, including testing of the package by the Indian Institute of Packaging (IIP).

d)Auction for Cardamom

e)Testing of customs samples of Spices

f)GI Registration of Spices

Spices Board has obtained the GI registrations for Malabar Pepper, Alleppey Green Cardamom, Coorg Green Cardamom, Guntur Sannam Chilly and Byadagi Chilly. The Board is popularizing the GI registered spices in the international markets.

g)Awards for excellence in exports of spices.

Spices Board has instituted awards for excellence in exports of spices to honour outstanding export performers of spices and spice products. The awards and trophies are part of the Board’s continued endeavor to promote the exports of spices and spice products.

h)Seminars and Training Programs.

i)Buyer Seller Meets (BSM).

Spices Board has been conducting Buyer Seller Meets (BSM) across the major spice producing regions so as to provide a platform for interaction between the spice growers and exporters for establishing direct market linkages. The BSMs offer a win-win situation to both the growers and exporters wherein the growers get a market for their produce along with remunerative returns, whereas the exporters find it beneficial in terms of establishing long term backward linkages and competitive sourcing of quality spices.

j)Trade Information Service.

Trade Information Service (TIS) division of the Marketing Department is entrusted with collection, compilation, analysis and dissemination of information on India’s Spices Exports & Imports, trend in global trade of Spices, Area and Production of Spices in the country, Auction details of Cardamom, Domestic & International prices of spices etc.

k)Setting up and maintenance of Infrastructure for common processing (Spices Parks).

Spices Board, with a view to enable facilities for primary processing and value addition of spices near the major production / market centres has established eight crop specific Spices Parks across the country in the major spice hubs. The Park is a well-conceived approach to empower the farmers to fetch better price and wider market access for their produce. The objective of the Spices Park is to provide common infrastructure facilities for processing, value addition and storage of spices to the farming community so as to ensure better quality of the product.

The facilities for cleaning, grading, packing, steam sterilization etc, established in the Spices Parks, will help the farmers to improve the quality of the produce and thus result in a higher price realization. Further, the processing units set up in the Spices Parks, which source quality produce directly from farmers, has helped to establish market linkage of Farmers / Farmers Groups with exporters, thereby strengthening the supply chain.

Major Activities to facilitate users by Marketing Wing– in tabular format. click the link

Quality Evaluation Laboratory

Export promotion of spice and spice products complying with quality standards was enhanced by establishing Quality Evaluation Laboratory in 1989 at Kochi. The growing demand of the Spice Industry from 2008 for Regional Quality Evaluation Laboratories led to establishment of new labs at Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi, Tuticorin, Guntur, Kandla and Kolkata in order to facilitate export of quality products through various ports in the country. The labs are accredited by NABL and certified under ISO Quality Management systems for testing of customer samples for physical, chemical and microbial contaminants .

Services Offered by Quality Evaluation Laboratory


Quality Evaluation Laboratories provide analytical services to the Indian Spice Industry and monitor the quality of spices produced and processed in the country. It also undertakes analysis of consignment samples under the mandatory inspection of the Spices Board. It has facilities to analyze various physical, chemical and microbial parameters including pesticide residues, aflatoxin, heavy metals, various chemical and microbiological contaminats in spices and spice products. The Laboratory follows internationally accepted testing methods for various analyses and validates new methods as and when necessary .The laboratory is equipped with the state of the art technology to undertake the analysis as per the requirements of importing countries including LC MS/MS, GC MS/MS, HPLC and Automated microbiological test equipment.


The Laboratory selects B.Sc/M.Sc graduate students through written examinations conducted periodically to function as analyst/trainees. After two years of training on all aspects of spice analysis, including use of sophisticated anlaytical equipment the trainees are issued with training certificates to avail job oppurtunities in spice industries/similar organizations.


The laboratories regularly take part in check sample/proficiency testing programmes to validate the analytical methods adopted. The laboratories conduct and participate in inter-laboratory check sample programmes for various physical, chemical and residual parameters. QELs also participate in proficiency testing programmes organised by NABL accredited national PT providers like; Aashvi Proficiency Testing and Analytical Services, Fare Labs Private Limited and programmes organised by International agencies like the Food Analysis Proficiency Assessment Scheme (FAPAS), American Spice Trade Association (ASTA); Public Health Laboratory Services (PHLS), U.K.; Campden & Chorleywood Food Research Association (CCFRA), U.K.; International Pepper Community (IPC), Jakarta.


The laboratory provides training to the technical personnel from the spice industry, Govt. officials and NGOs on the analysis of spices and spice products. There are also five - day specialized training programmes that cater to the needs of the industry. Training programmes in the field of physico-chemical analysis, analysis of pesticide residues, Sudan I-IV analyses, aflatoxin and microbiological contaminants are provided on a regular basis. The programme is aimed to upgrade and update the analytical capabilities of the technical person working in the spice Industry.


The Board takes part in the activities of Codex Alimentarius Commission/IPC/ISO.The Board has established a Codex Cell which functions as the secretariat for the Codex Committee on Spices and Culinary Herbs (CCSCH), which is hosted by India. Spices Board Director Research, by designation, is the Chair of the ISO-TC34/SC7 committee which drafts ISO standards for spices, herbs and condiments.


Spices Board is actively participating in the process of harmonization of standards for spices under various national/International agencies. The specifications suggested by the laboratory and the analytical methods proposed are incorporated in the specifications of International Pepper community (IPC). Laboratory is also providing data to International Organizations such as Codex Alimentarius Commission, ISO etc for the establishment of MRLs for pesticide residues/other chemical contaminants. The laboratory is also submitting the inputs for drafting various documents/standards on quality guidelines and food safety.

Analytical service details of Quality Evaluation Laboratories is provided in tabular format . click the link



The main objective of Research at Indian Cardamom Research Institute (ICRI) is to increase the productivity and improve the quality of cardamom (both small & large) which would thereby help in meeting the export demand thus enhancing the net income of spice farmers. Research is mainly focused on small cardamom growing tracts of Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu as well as large cardamom growing regions of North East States including Kalimpong and Darjeeling districts of West Bengal. Major Areas of Research are Crop Improvement, Biotechnology, Crop Production & Management, and Crop Protection & Transfer of Technology. Crop Improvement programmes consist of germplasm conservation, varietal improvement through selection & hybridisation. Biotechnology focuses on genetic advancement, Tissue Culture and molecular diagnostics. Crop Protection programmes include screening of germplasm for resistance to pests and diseases, as well as, surveillance and management of pests & diseases. Crop Production cover monitoring of nutrient requirement, pesticide residues and soil health analysis, weather & crop impact studies etc. Apart from these Organic Farming, Ecosystem conservation programmes and Sustainable production technologies are also being undertaken by ICRI, which include Bioagent production & distribution, integrated pest (IPM) and disease management (IDM) as well as integrated nutrient management (INM). In addition to these, several externally funded multi institutional and National projects have been taken up by the concerned Divisions.

Transfer of Technology & Farmer oriented programmes:-

  1. Bio agent production

  2. Planting material distribution

  3. Spice Clinics

  4. Soil test based advisory services

  5. Scientific crop advisory Services

  6. Short term training programmes

  7. Weather forecasting services to stakeholders

Major Activities to facilitate users by Research Wing in tabular format. click the link




A Grievances Cell is functioning under the direct supervision of the Secretary of the Board and he is the fulltime Grievance Officer of both public as well as staff. In addition to this for outstation offices the officer in charge of every outstation office has been designated as Grievance Redress Officer. If the grievance received by the Grievance Redress Officer can be redressed at his level it is disposed of immediately and in other cases same are submitted to the Secretary of the Board.

A notice Board informing the public about the address,contact Nos etc. of the Secretary & CVO, Spices Board, Central Vigilance Commission, New Delhi and CBI, Kochi has been kept in the Reception Bay for filing complaints of corruption.A Complaint Box has been kept in each office of the Board where one can drop complaint. Facility for the public to lodge their Grievance/Complaint through Spices Board's Website has also been provided in line with CVC website.


Spices Board has implemented the Right to Information Act, 2005 and has put in place all necessary systems and procedures on the Website of the Department. The Board has also appointed a Central Public Information Officer (CPIO), Assistant Central Public Information Officer and number of Public Information Officers and has set up a mechanism of appeal as envisaged in the Act. Director (Research), Spices Board is the Appellate Authority. Any citizen of India can seek information from the CPIO under the Act. Shri. Rupesh Kumar S, Deputy Director (Audit & Vigilance), Spices Board, Cochin, is the Coordinating CPIO and nodal officer of Spices Board. Transparency Officer is Sri Jijesh T Das, Deputy Director(EDP). Dr. Rema Shree A B, Director(Research) of the Board is the Appellate Authority.



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