Like Scotch whisky from Scotland, champagne from France and Tequila from Mexico, Feni will soon become India’s own drink from Goa. If
everything goes well, it will not be long before Feni is assigned a Geographical Indication (GI) Certificate. The implication of a GIC for Feni is simple: Only Goa can make Feni.

The GI authority in India has already published notice in this regard in its gazette, inviting comments from the public. The application for the GI certification was filed by the Government of Goa’s department of science & technology in association with Goa Cashew Feni Distillers & Bottlers Association(GCFDBA).

Goa department of science & technology director Michael D’souza told ET: “The certification process is almost complete and we are expecting this to happen very soon.” GI is a stamp of authenticity on the unique properties a region could offer to a product. The uniqueness of the weather, water, air that could not be replicated in any other parts of the world is authenticated by a GI certificate.

However, the ongoing process for GI certification is only for Feni made out of cashew fruits. Goa offers two varieties of Feni — coconut Feni and cashew Feni.

Cashew Feni is distilled out of cashew apple juice whereas coconut Feni is made from coconut toddy. Historians aver that Feni making is known to Goa for about 500 years. Since this is a cottage industry providing employment to thousands of people, the Goa government is keen to ensure that Feni belongs to Goa officially.