Raga Ceylon

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The traditional art of kithul sap tapping and toddy making involve many rituals, customs and beliefs, making the kithul raa more than simply fermenting a beverage to a biodynamic food. It is a well-accepted traditional belief among villagers that the drinking of naturally fermented kithul can keep you energetic and young. Traditionally, this is a natural, wild fermented, milky whitish and opaque drink with a characteristic toddy flavour and sourer bitter taste, which only lasts for a few hours. 

Agrideshiya Pvt Ltd has taken this short lived toddy and enhanced it into an international level beverage, using specialised brewing and processing technologies which are in complacence with ISO 22000 standards. In short, a long-standing Sri Lankan classic has been given a vibrant twist and sparkle, with an authentic toddy taste and a clean finish. 

The traditional art of kithul sap tapping and toddy making involve many rituals, customs and beliefs, making the kithul raa more than simply fermenting a beverage to a biodynamic food. It is a well-accepted traditional belief among villagers that the drinking of naturally fermented kithul can keep you energetic and young. Traditionally, this is a natural, wild fermented, milky whitish and opaque drink with a characteristic toddy flavour and sourer bitter taste, which only lasts for a few hours. 

Agrideshiya Pvt Ltd has taken this short-lived toddy and enhanced it into an international level beverage, using specialised brewing and processing technologies which are in compliance with ISO 22000 standards. In short, a long-standing Sri Lankan classic has been given a vibrant twist and sparkle, with an authentic toddy taste and a clean finish.

The characteristics of kithul toddy come exclusively from its raw material, fresh unfermented sap which can only be harvested drop by drop, from sharply cut immature flowers. This must be done by a senior tapper following a series of rituals and preparations attended with utmost care. 

Fresh sap drops are a rich source of nutrients including sugars, free amino acids, polyphenols, vitamins and minerals at a neutral pH, making it an ideal base for fermentation by wild microorganisms, which finally transform the purplish fresh sap into an alcoholic beverage within a day. 

A pot full of toddy with spilling froths, unloading from a tree canopy during misty mornings at hilly rain forests, tells the story of all the marvels of this local favourite. 

We impart the sense of modern information technology into our fresh sap collection process to guarantee the natural quality and authenticity of our raw materials with full traceability. An extensive and effective process has been introduced to produce Raga Kithul Sparkling Raa, which safely purifies and transforms the traditional beverage, while maintaining its natural flavours and benefits.

Sri Lanka is a small island blessed by Mother Nature with rich bio resources and traditional know-how for their utilization. We are well known the world over for our  island’s spices, tea, coconut and traditional healings. However, kithul is one of the greatest heritages associated with the wilderness of our tropical forests, which was undisclosed for a much longer period.

Agridhesiya has proudly made available Raga Sparkling Kithul Raa, from a local community that lives in proximity to the world heritage forests of Sinharaja and Adams Peak. The product is available in an easy can, containing an exclusive blend of tradition and technology. Raga breaks long standing barriers to enjoy local kithul toddy from wherever you are.

The kithul or fishtail palm (Caryota urens) naturally grows in the highlands and wet zones of Sri Lanka, and is a source of livelihood for many communities in rural villages. It provides treacle, jaggery, and kithul flour, as well as the fermented beverage, enjoyed by locals around the country. 

Research shows that this industry dates back over 2,000 years, and has yielded the rich, dark syrup with a floral, yet smokey flavour, for consumption in food and beverage, in its variety of forms. The famous ingredient is also mentioned throughout history in Sri Lanka’s literature and has been used by many as a substitute for sugar or sweetener in a variety of foods, desserts and beverages, including tea. 

Kithul is a special member in the palm family, which dominates the high forest canopy and blooms from above, marking the end of its growth.  Large inflorescences (flowers) emerge from the palm, about two to four meters in length and produce many thousand of fruits in a single inflorescence.  

 

Tapping of palm inflorescences is practiced in different parts of the world for palms bearing smaller inflorescence like Coconut, Palmyrah, Wild Date Palm and Arenga. However, the art and technology of tapping of large kithul inflorescence is an exclusive heritage of Sri Lanka. 

 

The first flower of a kithul tree, known as the “Mudun Mala”, comes from the apex, and is considered the god’s flower. It is never touched for sap tapping. The rest of the flowers which bloom after the “Mudun Mala” are used for sap tapping at their immature stages.

 

A tapper is a skilled person who learns the art and masters his tapping skills under the guidance of a senior tapper, often his farther or relative. He is highly committed in the task of climbing tall kithul trees twice or three times a day continuously for several months, irrespective of rainy and gloomy weather conditions.

The intricate process of creating the unique Raga Sparkling Kithul Raa comprises several stages. We use specialised, state of art brewing technology for controlled fermentation of the sweet kithul sap, in an automated process line made in compliance with ISO 22000 FMS. We also follow all necessary measures, including ensuring that all vessels and pipes are made with high quality stainless steel 316 grade. The technologically advanced systems ensure that the entire process is carried out hygienically, while following all safety and precautionary guidelines.

In partnership with Agrithmics, Raga Sparkling Kithul Raa is made using a highly specialized and enhanced process monitoring system, from collection of raw materials to the final supply of the product. This includes entering data such as registration of tappers, their identification via computerized cards, to weight measurements, collection and final distribution. Even details such as batch volume, pH levels and brix, are recorded in the system. This technologically advanced system ensures that quality and transparency are maintained, to produce the highest standard of the product, which in turn, offers a hygienically produced beverage for the customer to enjoy.

Raga Sparkling Kithul Raa of Ceylon complies with ISO 22000 – Food Safety Management System, as well as GMP and HACCP.