The step will ensure better prices for the goat-herding community in Ladakh and the local handloom artisans producing genuine Pashmina products, currently a disadvantaged lot due to rampant marketing malpractices. The certification will help curb the counterfeiting of Pashmina and protect the interests of artisans and nomads, who produce the raw material, Textiles Minister Smriti Irani said.
Recently, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) released in Kashmir’s Leh a domestic standard for identification, marking and labeling of Pashmina products to certify its purity. At present 2,400 families are rearing 2.5 lakh Pashmina goats, generally domesticated and reared by nomadic communities called the Changpa in the Changthang region of Greater Ladakh. Ladakh produces 50 metric tonne of the finest grade Pashmina in the world (12-15 microns). The Ministry of textiles is processing a proposal for funding Rs. 20 cr for a de-hairing plant for Leh that along with this initiative will lead to progress in the Pashmina sector in Ladakh.