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'Mustard' the smallest oil seed

Rebinson P.L.
Rebinson P.L.
October 19, 2022
'Mustard' the smallest oil seed

Mustard, specifically known as mustard seed is an oil seed, also considered a spice. It belongs to the botanical family ‘Brassicaceae’, and is scientifically known as ‘Brassica nigra’.

Mustard is mainly used to make oil and to prepare condiments used for flavouring food. It is also used for certain folk medicinal purposes and to make biofuel.

The seeds are believed to have originated and were first used in ancient Egypt more than 5000 years ago. However, the varieties of mustard are supposed to have come from different places. Brown or Indian mustard is of Himalayan origin while yellow and white mustards are of Mediterranean origin. In short, the same is native to certain parts of Europe, Asia and North Africa. Mustard was one of the most important commodities in the olden days just as it is today also. And it has even been mentioned in the Bible.

Mustard can be cultivated on a wide variety of soils like clay loam and sandy loam soils, but they require fertile light loam soils with good drainage and dry and cool climates for the maximum yield.

Mustard seed is found in more than 40 different varieties. But, three of them: black, brown, and white coloured seeds are the most popular and used ones. It is an annual herb which is also a rabi crop and is usually planted from September to October and harvested from February to March. The plants normally grow 5-7 feet in height and take around 2-3 months to be ready for the harvest which is determined when the seed pods turn yellowish-brown.

Mustard seed contains copper, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, sodium, zinc, selenium, manganese, riboflavin, thiamin, folic acid and vitamins K, C and B6. It is purported to lower blood sugar levels, protect against psoriasis, block microbial growth, promote skin and hair health, support heart health, treat cold symptoms, and prevent infections and certain types of cancer.

The largest producer of mustard seeds in the world is Canada, followed by Nepal, India, Pakistan, Hungary, the UK and the US. The main exporter is also Canada, followed by Russia, Germany, India, and Ukraine. And the main importers are the US, France, Germany, Nepal and Poland.

In India, the largest producer of mustard seeds is Rajasthan, followed by Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

Some of the major trading markets of mustard seeds in India:

Rajasthan (Bharatpur, Alwar, Sawaimadhopur, Sriganganagar)

Haryana (Bhiwani, Rewari, Sirsa, Mewat, Hisar)

Madhya Pradesh (Bhopal, Sehore, Bilani, Narmadapuram)

Uttar Pradesh (Biswan, Lucknow, Semari, Sarsawa)

Names of mustard seed in different Indian languages:

Hindi                   Sarso

Tamil                   Katuku

Malayalam          Katuk

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is mustard?
    Mustard seeds are the small round edible seeds produced by certain plants belonging to the botanical family Brassicaceae, mostly used for making oil and cooking.
  • What is mustard in Hindi?
    Mustard is called 'sarso' in Hindi.
  • Which state is the largest producer of mustard in India?
    'Rajasthan' is the largest producer of mustard in India. 
Rebinson P.L.
Rebinson P.L.
Rebinson P.L. (@ebinso) is a self-published author, content marketing strategist, copywriter and editor who has been writing blogs, articles and advertising copies for various firms since completing his master's in English literature. He's dedicated to helping and guiding businesses of all sizes to achieve their desired reach and popularity.
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