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Subadh Kumar Nayak

Sambalpur: The quaint little shop in Kunjelpada area in Sambalpur where Prabhulal Gupta and his wife Rekha Gupta prepare a local delicacy, Sarsatia is now witnessing a mad rush. For the Guptas, things have been quite hectic as the word of mouth on Sarsatia has spread like a wildfire drawing attention from different corners of the State, country and even the world. It arguably started after OTV carried out extensive coverage of this best-kept secret of Sambalpur and the Sarsatia sweet's popularity exploded.

Now residents of Sambalpur are demanding Geographical Indication (GI) tag for the local sweet delicacy which has gained popularity both nationally and internationally. The locals said that the GI tag for Sarsatia, which is prepared from special ingredients including the twigs of Ganjer tree, rice powder and sugar, will differentiate it from competing products in the market. Many claim that the GI tag will help in boosting exports and put the area on the global map.

“Sarsatia is one of the delicacies available only in Sambalpur. Given sarsatia's popularity, it should get Geographical Indication (GI) tag. Sambalpur will also get a global identity if sarsatia is recognised,” said a local resident, Badharam Das.

Prabhulal, whose family has been making this crispy sweet for three generations, said that his family used to prepare Sarsatia only in the morning. However, due to the growing demand, they are now preparing it even in the evening hours.

“The demand has now become so high that we don’t even get time to prepare food for ourselves. People flock our shop from 5 AM to evening 6 PM,” said Prabhulal.

“People come here in large numbers to buy the sweet which is very tasty and available only in Sambalpur. You can’t get it anywhere in the world,” said ChittaranjanTripathy, a local resident.

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