There were half a million small scale oil extraction facilities in India, almost one per village in the early 1900. Simple machines driven by animal power met the needs of the entire population. Housewives, then, relished the freshly pressed mustard, coconut, peanuts and sesame oils. During the British rule the number of units had fallen to 140,000 and then increased to 300,000 during Mahatma Gandhi’s Swadesh movement. Today India is the second largest importer of cooking oil. Indian housewives are marketed sophisticated, refined and heart healthy oils such as Canola oil while smart consumers in the US are moving away from it.
|Sanskrit literature from 500BC talk about the Ghani oil mill|
The smarter consumer population in the US is running away from refined and GMO to cold pressed and natural oils even as the Indian population is being weaned from native oils such as coconut oil. Health conscious consumers in the US want the extra virgin oils that was in plenty in Indian Villages a century ago. Indian Government is facing record foreign exchange deficits. Is the world more irrational in the 2000s compared to the early 1900s?