Perhaps, the most potent turmeric in the worldAs an ingredient steeped in Indian history and culture, the use of Turmeric dates back to 4 BC! The world’s recent recognition of turmeric’s varied health benefits has made everyone aware of the magic of this golden ingredient.
Known for its incomparable health benefits that include anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties, turmeric is full of antioxidants and is known to improve heart function, diabetes, stress levels and boasts of a whole lot of other proven effects.
The key to turmeric’s power is the presence of curcumin and most varieties contain about 3-4%. This is the substance that brings these healing effects to the human body and it is a highly potent source of overall wellbeing.
In the Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya, a small town called Lakadong harbours a special secret. They grow a variety of turmeric that is so exclusive, it grows nowhere else! The Lakadong variety of turmeric is known for its curcumin value which goes up to 12%! That is nearly 4 times the value of the common variety found everywhere else. The richer, deep yellow root is a signature of the Lakadong village, especially since people who have tried growing it elsewhere, have not been able to replicate the exact potency anywhere else. The root with this value grows only on the Jaintia Hills and forms less than 1% of the export volume.
The farming of this Lakadong turmeric is all thanks to one powerhouse, Trinity Saioo. Hailing from the matrilinear Jaintia Tribes of the Mulieh Village, Trinity’s mother too was a cultivator of cash crops like Turmeric.
In the 90s, when coal mining swept the state of Meghalaya, the people of Jaintia Hills took to that route to earn their livelihoods. Meanwhile, Trinity was a professionally trained teacher, making her way through the education sector, even though her heart was always back home, close to her turmeric farms. Around 2003, Trinity discovered that the Lakadong variety fetched nearly three times more in the market as compared to other varieties, and her further investigation into that, led to her discovering the magic of the curcumin values. Even though there was some village wisdom already prevailing regarding the superiority of the Lakadong variety, it was also known to be more susceptible to pests and was not the preferred variety to grow amongst the farmers.
In 2014, when the National Green Tribunal imposed a ban on coal mining in Meghalaya, the people were forced to go back to farming again. Most of the people resumed turmeric farming but the ordinary variety fetched enough for subsistence, not success. Meanwhile, curiosity grew among the people, seeing Trinity earn 3 times the money on the farming of the Lakadong variety, and Trinity saw this as the opportunity of spreading the wisdom and the wealth to uplift the community.
She began teaching the women farmers around her all about her success with the Lakadong variety, and today, single handedly is responsible for the massive success of the initiative.
These environmentally and socially aware women are leading the charge in the revolution that is women empowerment. Today, they have self-help groups and various cooperative societies that has helped them to get farm subsidies and ecologically sustainable vermicomposting subsidies with the Spices Board.
At Beyondarie, we only use turmeric sourced directly from Trinity and her farms in the Lakadong Village. Not only does this mean that our teas are rich with the beautifully rich Lakadong Turmeric, but also that we are supporting a woman led initiative that is progressive, uplifting and environmentally sound.
The Lakadong variety is perhaps, the most potent turmeric in the world. It is a naturally GI tagged variety that provides an irreplicable benefit of immunity to the human body, more so when combined with pepper. Try our exclusive lattes and teas that contain this golden magic and feel the difference of the untamed herbals and, perhaps, the wildest teas in the world.