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Traditional Knowledge on Chiuri and Its Potentiality for Commercialization

Traditional Knowledge on Chiuri and Its Potentiality for Commercialization

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Published by khilendra gurung

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Categories:Types, School Work
Published by: khilendra gurung on Dec 31, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Traditional Knowledge on Chiuri (
 Diploknema butvracea
) and its Potentialityfor Commercialization
Khilendra GurungResource Research and Development CenterKathmandu, NepalE-mail:khilendragurung@yahoo.com 1. Introduction
 Chiuri tree (Botanical name:
 Diploknema butvracea
(Roxburgh) H. J. Lam; Syn
. Bassiabutyracea
Roxburgh, Syn.
Madhuca butyracea
(Roxburgh) Macbride
Aesandra butyracea
(Roxburgh) Baehmi, Syn.
(Roxburgh) Engler; English name: Butter tree;Family: Sapotaceae) is a deciduous, medium size tree about 20m high native to Nepal. Leavesstalked, generally crowded near the ends of branches, oblong, entire, acuminate, hairy beneath,glabrous above. Flowers stalked, crowded at the ends of branches, yellowish. Fruit a berry, pear shaped, with one or two seeds. Flowers: November-January; Fruits: April-July. Propagated byseeds.It grows mainly in the sub-Himalayan tracts on steep slopes, ravines and cliffs at an altitude of 300-1500m from east to west Nepal. The main product of the tree is ghee or butter, extractedfrom the seeds and popularly known as "Chiuri ghee".
2. Availability of the raw material
 There is no up to date data on Chiuri plant and its ghee production in Nepal. The annual production of ghee ranges from 60-500kg, with an average production of 175kg per farmer.Generally, farmers sell 50-60% of their total production. The study revealed that the production per tree ranges from minimum of 1-14kg averaging about 5.25kg per tree. Similarly, the yield of the fruit per hectare is estimated to be 100-800kg. The number of tree per hectare is estimated to be 37-90 averaging about 40.
3. Harvesting techniques
 Chiuri tree is found on steep and difficult slopes. Climbing tree is difficult and it is risky toharvest the Chiuri fruit. In many instances people fall from the tree and succumb to seriousinjury and sometime loss of life has also occurred. The harvesters place
(traditional basket)on one shoulder and pick up the fruit with their other hand and place it into the
. Normally,male harvesters climb the tree and women gather the fruit that has fallen down from the tree.Children also help in the gathering of the fruits.
4. Importance of Chiuri tree among Chepang community
 Chepangs are known for the immense knowledge on forestry products and their collection and preparation. They have special relationship with Chiuri trees as they have custom/tradition of 
 2giving Chiuri trees to their daughters as gift/dowry during marriage. Hence, it is regarded as private resources of Chepangs.
5. Processing methods
 In earlier days ghee was processed at a community level. This is now undertaken at theindividual household level. Normally, about 18kg is required to produce one liters of ghee.Among the farmers surveyed the consumption of Chiuri ghee varied from 2-5kg per year per household in Chitwan district. The Chiuri fruit is collected and squeezed to liberate seeds. After cleaning and drying, the seeds are pounded using a traditional pounder, a
", into a fine powder. The powder is steamed on a perforated plate over the boiling pan. The oil is thenextracted using a traditional oil expeller called "
". The product is bitter in taste due tohigh content of impurities such as saponins which are carried along with fat extracted fromabove process. The ghee needs post filtration or purification to become edible. The final productis white with a strong smell and taste. Chiuri ghee remains solid up to 48
C and does notdeteriorate in hot weather.
6. Process flow of Chiuri ghee
 1. Collection of fruits
 2. Squeezing of the fruits
 3. Removal of inner part of mesocarp
 4. Drying in the fireplace in two story bamboo basket for 4-5 days and stored in the basket or jute bags
 5. Crushing and steaming of seed flour 
 6. Oil extracted in extractor/expeller 
7. Traditional uses
The Chiuri fruit pulp supplements and sometimes substitutes staple food. Chiuri juice isconsidered to make the body warm and possess intoxicating properties. Juice of the corolla is

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