neem cake
Photo: Mathrubhumi

Malayalis are too much inclined to organic farming. Unfortunately, not many people who support organic farming are aware of the fake products sold in the label of organic. A lot of low quality products with unscientific ingredients are widely available in the market.

Neem cake or ‘veppin pinnakku’ is commonly used in organic farming as a fertiliser and insecticide. Infact, neem cake is not only a pesticide, but also a bio decomposer. Neem cake is the residue after taking the oil from neem seeds. No matter how advanced machinery Is used to extract oil from the seeds, 10-15 per cent oil will remain in the neem cake.

As the neem residue contains natural elements that act as insecticides, it is safe to use in organic farming. Neem cake provides many among the 16 elements required for plant growth. The residue after extracting oil from the seed is formed as neem cake. Some people mix the waste particles like shell of the seed in the residue to increase weight. Though the cost may be reduced, this affects its quality.

neem cake
Photo: Mathrubhumi

There are some tricks to recognise the fake neem cake in the market. The neem cake mixed with seed shell look reddish in colour and will not be solid. On the other hand, the pure neem cake will be solid and deep black in colour. Some fake products can be identified easily as the shell particles can be spotted in the neem cake.

If it is difficult to find the fake, add 50 gm of neem cake in a glass of water and mix it well. If the neem cake is adulterated, there will be no sediments and the liquid will be reddish. Pure neem cake will have yellow sediments under the glass and the liquid will be in black colour. The quality of neem cake can affect the result of organic farming.