Mkhaan Global Usage

Traditionally, cultivated in the hinterland of India, Mkhaan has gained huge popularity across the globe due to its diverse health benefits. Grown in Tropical regions, Mkhaan is packed with the goodness of minerals and nutrients like Calcium, protein, magnesium, potassium. There has been a paradigm shift in the demand of Mkhaan or Fox nuts in China, Korea, Thailand, Europe and U.S. 

Due to urbanization in developing countries like India, people are more health conscious and have more disposable income. This has increase in usage of Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan in the daily diets of consumers. Across the world, Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan are replacing high calories, sugary, fried snacks. In fact, Fox nuts are becoming the preferred choice of consumers as compared to expensive nuts like almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, dried berries etc. 

Global Usage of Mkhaan:

Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan are used by different countries in different ways. Some prefer Mkhaan seeds, some prefer uncooked Mkhaan pops and some prefer cooking Mkhaan as main course, desserts etc. The usage pattern is very different in Asia as opposed to Europe and U.S.

The global market of Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan pops is estimated at USD 35 million approximately. Asia Pacific accounts for 85 % of the global market of Mkhaan and Mkhaan seeds and is USD 30 million Industry. 

  • India: Mostly cultivated in Bihar, Mkhaan is extremely popular in India. Hundreds of years ago, Mkhaan was cultivated in Madhubani region of Bihar. Bihar accounts for 90% of the global production of Mkhaan. Madhubani has been awarded the prestigious GI Tag which has given it a free hand to export Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan flakes to the rest of the world. Traditionally, Mkhaan is used for religious purposes in India. Mkhaan is offered to deities and are also used to make garlands for Gods and Goddesses. In urban India, Mkhaan is used as a healthy snack. Also, used in making curries, Mkhaan parathas, Mkhaan kheer, consumers are experimenting with new recipes. In North Eastern State of  Manipur, it is known as thamchet and lotus seeds are eaten raw.

    Ayurvedic medicines in India use Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan flakes. Low in sodium, sugar, Mkhaan usage in Ayurvedic medicines helps in fighting many diseases like heart attacks, diabetes, hypertension and removing toxins. It helps in balancing ‘Vatta’ and ‘Pitta’ in the body. Mkhaan Seeds powder is generally taken with Ashwagandha powder, Yashtimadhu, Vidarikand for better effects. In Ayurveda, Mkhaan helps in increasing and improving sperm counts and helps in male fertility.

  • China and Japan: The consumption usage and pattern of Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan flakes are very similar in China and Japan. Both the countries call Mkhaan as a vegetable and regularly eat roots called as Rhizomes. They also eat the stem and the leaves of the plant. Leaves of Mkhaan plant are used to make spicy dishes and also tea.

    Chinese Medicines highly use Lotus seeds as an ingredient. Largely cultivated in the islands of Hainan and Taiwan, Mkhaan are essentials for Chinese medicines due to its innumerable health benefits. It is believed in Chinese medicines, Mkhaan seeds help in respiratory diseases, indigestion, strokes, erectile dysfunction, arthritis etc.  Mkhaan seed powder is also used in production of Baby food in China.  In Japan and China, the paste of Mkhaan seeds are used in Making delicious Pastries and cakes.

    Overnight soaked dried Mkhaan seeds are used for cooking nutritious soups and congee. They are used in making many other dishes as well. One of the most famous snacks in China is the crystallised lotus seeds that are cooked in syrup and are specially cooked during the Chinese New Year.

  • Thailand: Like China and Japan, dried Lotus seeds are very famous snacks in Thailand. In Thailand it is called Med-bua-op.
  • United Kingdom: A few Manufacturers have started distributing Mkhaan flakes and seeds as snacks across the United Kingdom. Consumers are satisfied with the numerous health benefits of this wonder nut. There has been a high demand of Mkhaan in U.K. over the years.
  • Europe & The U.S.A.: A few decades ago, people in Europe and America were not aware of Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan flakes. It is in the recent past, that people have realised the benefits of Mkhaan. This has led to a steep increase in the demand of Mkhaan seeds and Flakes. With growing market demand in countries like Germany, Italy and France, many exporters have found export opportunities in these regions. However, there is still a huge untapped markets in U.S. and many countries of Europe. Belgium has shown interest in Mkhaan by interacting with the Bihar Government and exploring the opportunities for export in their city.
  • Colombia: Colombia is also a big market for dried lotus seeds that are directly consumed from the local markets and are eaten raw. They are mostly available in Barranquilla and Cartagena. In colombia they are called ‘Martello’.

Global Distribution of Mkhaan

To meet the exponential increase in demand of Fox nuts or Mkhaan across the globe, Manufacturers and retailers are using multiple platforms to reach out to their prospective consumers. With urbanisation, consumers’ buying patterns have also changed over the years. Many prefer online sites within the comforts of their homes to buy Mkhaan. Retailers are keeping up with the changing demands of consumers. Each country has a preferred platform for buying Mkhaan. It is important to understand different market needs and offer the produce as per the consumers in that country.

With E-commerce and online sales, World has become a global village. Manufacturers in developing countries like India are getting orders from other end of the world with a click of a button. E-commerce has given a big boost to the exports of Mkhaan. Retailers are making Mkhaan available to the consumers across the globe in all formats like big super markets, hypermarkets, grocery stores, nutritional food outlets per other retail formats. Though E-commerce has gained a lot of popularity but consumers still prefer the brick and mortar formats for buying Mkhaan seeds and Mkhaan Flakes. 

Mkhaan in Indian Mythology

India is a home to many religions mainly Hinduism, Islam, Christians and Sikhism. Apart from these, Jains, Buddhists, Parsi community too are a part of the glorious history of India. Religions has played a very important role amongst ancient India. Mythology talks about uncountable Gods and Goddesses. Every state of India has many deities that have been revered over centuries. In Indian mythology, festivals are celebrated in the the honour of all the deities.

  • Mainly cultivated in Bihar, Mkhaan has a long history of being considered as a pure food in Indian culture. In Eighteenth century, under the kingship of King Darbhanga, Mkhaan was cultivated in the small region of Madhubani. Since then, Mkhaan has been included in all the food offering during festivals across the country
  • Be it any religion or culture in India, Mkhaan has been a part of every religious practice and rituals. Mkhaan has been considered as a “Satvik Bhojan” that is offered to idols of Gods and Goddesses. In Indian mythology, in religious texts, it is advised to take light, easy digestible food like Mkhaan that helps in working of the digestion system of the people observing fasts. It does not disrupt the body functioning due to lack of nutrients.
  • Owing to its heavenly nature, Mkhaan is considered pure during Pooja and Havans during Hindu ceremony. People observing fasts during Navratri and Durga Pooja have Mkhaan as a food to eat. Apart from dry fruits, fruits, Mkhaan is very famous option even in Muslim community during Ramazan. People observe Roza or fast and eat Mkhaan in different forms.
  • In Gujarati community in India, Falahari Mkhaan Chivda is very famous as a snacking options. During festival period or Pooja at home, Gujarati women make Mkhaan Chivda by roasting it in a pan with a little oil and Sendha namak or the Rock salt. They also add peanuts and dry fruits to it to make it more tasty and filling.
  • In Jain community, both Shewtambara and Digambara are very particular about their food intake  during fasts and Pooja. They observe day long fasts in the name of God and only eat the food that is considered pure. Mkhaan is one of their favourite choices as it is considered a pure snack. It is supposed to have health benefits that help in sustaining people during the fasts.
  • Mkhaan has always been a very important ingredient of any food offered to God as it has many  benefits that helps people in keeping healthy. People also offer Mkhaan desserts like Kheer and sheera to deities. It is also then distributed among the devotees. Many people open their fasts with Mkhaan kheer. It is considered auspicious to make Mkhaan snacks at home as opposed to eat from packaged Mkhaan that are being sold by retailers these days.
  • After the awareness among people, many manufacturers and retailers have tried to cash in on selling Mkhaan products during festivals and religious celebrations. However, Indians still prefer to make Mkhaan at home with their own hands as they believe in following the whole ritual process during any fast or festival.
Mkhaan in Hindu Mythology
Mkhaan Lifecycle

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