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Title: Madhurguna (Stevia rebaudiana) : Introduction, research and commercial production in India
Authors: Singh, Virendra
Ramesh, K
Megeji, Nima W
Kaul, V K
Ahuja, P S
Issue Date: Dec-2006
Publisher: NISCAIR-CSIR, India
Abstract: Stevia (Stevia rebaudiana) indiginously known as 'Madhurguna' is a sweet perennial plant that belongs to the family Asteraceae. It is also called as Sweet herb of Paraguay. This plant is a native of South America which is also the centre of diversity. As a crop it is popular in few countries such as Japan, China, Taiwan, Thailand, Korea, Mexico, USA, Malaysia, Indonesia, Tanzania and Canada. It was introduced for the first time in South India during 1997. However, in North Indi a, this plant was introduced by Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology (IHBT) during 2000. It is now under cultivation in Uttaranchal, HP, Punjab, Haryana, Chattisgarh, UP, MP and Jammu & Kashmir. S. rebaudiana commercially exploited for the diterpene glycosides, stevioside (10-12%) and rebaudioside A(3- 4%). The sweetness of the plant is not only free of calories, but it does not get metabolized in the body. This is used for the manufacture of chewingum, tooth paste, mouth wash and antismoking pills etc. The sweetness in Stevia is attributed to the presence of 10 different ent-kaurene diterpene glycosides and is 300 times as sweet as cane-sugar. The fresh leaves are 30 times sweeter than sucrose obtained from cane sugar. Stevia can be grown as a perennial crop in subtropical regions of Shivalik hills, foot-hills and mild temperate regions of the hills. It may also be grown as an annual crop in high altitude hilly regions during the warmer days of summer and in plains of South India as perennial crop. Farmers from different parts of the country have adopted this crop and results of productivity and quality arc encouraging. IHBT, Palampur played a major role in the development of the sweet herb from seed to product. The work has been carried out on its introduction, propagation, cultivation, quality evaluation and processing. Seed germination problems have been solved by making hybrid seeds from different accessions. Processing technology is available for extension.
Page(s): 101-105
ISSN: 0975-2412 (Online); 0771-7706 (Print)
Appears in Collections:BVAAP Vol.14(2) [December 2006]

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