Ganjam Kewda Flower

Ganjam Kewda Flower
Geographical indication
Alternative names Kia phula (ଗଞ୍ଜାମ କିଆଫୁଲ),white lotus(ଧଳାପଦ୍ମ)
Type flower
Area Ganjam, Odisha
Country India
Material Flower

Kewra is an extract from the male flowers of a screw-pine tree.Ganjam Kewda Flower is registered (on Application No. 229) under the Geographical Indications (GI) of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act by Government of India. Kewda scent is produced chhatrapur, Brahmapur, Gopalpur and Jagannathpur in district of Ganjam, Odisha. although kewda plants almost distributed almost throughout inda, 90% of production of kewda flower is estimated in this district of Odisha.[1]

The flower is dear to the Indian heart is Kewda (Pandanus odoratissimus. It grows on a small tree or shrub which is both cultivated and grows wild in coastal areas. It can also be found in some inland districts but the flowers seem to create their most exquisite floral bouquet in certain coastal localities, the most famous being the Ganjam district of Odisha. The tree/shrub can reach a height of 18 feet. The densely branched plant is supported by aerial roots forming a thick impenetrable jungle. The long leaves possess prickly spines along the edges and mid-ribs making the plant tough to handle for those not use to their peculiar nature. The male flower "spikes"(a better technical word is infloresence) are 10-20 inches long. Along the central stalk of spike one can fine many true flowers each encased in a fragrant cream-colored spathe; a spathe being a leaflike structure enclosing a flower. A fully mature Kewda tree produces about 30-40 flower spikes each year weighing 5-6 each ounces each.[2]


Kewra is used to flavor foods, and for Ayurveda healing.The Kewra plant grows wild along the east coast of India. The plants producing the best floral bouquet are grown in Ganjam district of South Orrisa. It should be noted that Rampe plant (Pandanus amaryllifolius Roxb) is different from Kewra plant. The fragrant leaves of Rampe plant (Pandan Patta) are used to flavor rice and curries.


Kewra plant is dioecious, with male and female flowers produced on different plants. In Sanskrit, the plant is called Ketaki. The male plants are called 'Ketaki Viphala', and the female plants and called 'Swarana Ketaki'.

The male plant - flower

Only the flowers of the male plant are harvested to extract the floral bouquet to produce Kewra. The flower bouquet is sweet similar to rose flowers, and fruity. The Kewra plant grows up to 18 feet tall. The plants flower three times a year (Summer, Monsoon, and Winter). 60% of the flowers grow during monsoon season (July–September), and possess the best floral bouquet. 30% of the flowers grow during summer (May–June), and remaining 10% grow during winter (October–November). The creamy white color flowers are encased in long spikes about one foot long. On average, one mature plant can produce about 35 flower spikes, each weighing about 5 to 6 ounces.

The female plant - flower

The flower of female plant has no floral bouquet. It is left to develop into fruit.[3] Types of Kewra Extracts

Kewra Flower's extracts

The kewda flowers extracts sold in the market are:

Kewra Ruh (Oil)

This is 100% pure oil extracted from male Kewra flowers. It takes about 1,000 flowers (370 pounds) to produce one ounce of Kewra Ruh. In Ayurveda, the oil is used as a stimulant, and to treat rheumatoid arthritis

Kewra Attar (Perfume)

The Kewra flowers are distillated into sandalwood oil. Kewra Attar has about 3% to 5% Kewra oil, and the remainder is Sandalwood oil. Normally, it is specified in terms of number of flower spikes (10,000 to 15,000) per pound of sandalwood oil, This is the most popular perfume used in India. It is applied behind ears, and used to scent clothes. The perfume is also added to various cosmetics.

Kewra Jal (Hydrosol)

The fragrant hydrosol may be either a primary product from low quality flowers collected during hot summer. It may be a secondary product from Kewra Ruh or Attar production. Kewra Jal is also called Kewra water. Kewra Jal is about 0.02% of Kewra oil. 24 flowers can produce one pound of primary hydrosol. The hydrosol is used to flavor popular sweets such as Rasgulla, Rasmalai, and Ghulab Jamun. It is used to flavor rice dishes such as Biryani.

Kewda Industry in Ganjam

The kewda flower and its rooh, produced after processing the flowers, is also unique to the region. The flower grows in at least four coastal blocks of the district - Chhatrapur, Rangeilunda, Ganjam and Chikiti. The kewda oil is extracted by processing the flowers in distilleries. Around 250 processing units, locally known as bhatis, were engaged in processing the flowers.

The oil of the thorny flower is used in preparing gutka across the country, apart from its use in the perfume industry. After the ban on manufacture and sale of gutka in several states, including Odisha, most of the processing units have stopped operations. "The gutka ban has hit kewda farmers hard.[4]


  1. Dey, S.c. (2016-01-30). Fragrant Flowers for Homes and Gardens, Trade and Industry. Abhinav Publications. p. 150. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  2. "Kewda, From the Travel Journal. Kewda - Orissa's Fragrant Floral King". Retrieved 30 January 2016. External link in |website= (help)
  3. "What is Kewra? Kewra-Ruh Kewra-Attar Kewra-Jal". Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  4. mohanty, hrushikesh. "Berhampur charts silk route to recognition". Times Of India. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
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