Organic Pure Kithul Jaggery
✓ 100% natural
✓ Traceable to source
Kosgolla jaggery is a premium-quality jaggery with an unique taste and flavour, as well as a distinctive story behind its production. It has been manufactured for the last 45 years at the Kosgolla Estate in Ududumbara, Sri Lanka.
The unmatched natural sweetness and distinctive flavour of Kithul jaggery makes it one of the country’s best original sweetners; soft, honeyed and healthy. This unrefined natural sugar is prepared from the treated sap of Kithul palms (Caryota urenus).
Mountain Kithul Palms
Kosgolla jaggery is produced from the juice of mountain Kithul palms, which grow naturally and in abundance in the region. These mountain kithul trees grow over 100 feet tall in order to penetrate the jungle canopy. This particular palm infuses a special flavour – not found in other regions – to the jaggery that is made from it.
A Hundred Year Old Process
To manufacture this unique product, the treacle (juice) of the mountain Kithul palms is collected by experienced tappers, boiled using firewood from fallen trees in the estate, and prepared in a traditional method used for centuries. The thick brown syrup that is produced from this process is then poured into coconut shells and left to harden– as is the tradition, which also gives the loaves of jaggery their distinctive half-globular shape.
The end product is an organic, 100% natural product with no sugar added. This delicious jaggery has been enjoyed by Sri Lankans for decades with a hot cup of tea or to make decadent treats such as kawum, halapa, and wattalapam.
From the Mountains to your Home
The premium quality and taste of Kosgolla jaggery is due its source of sap (from kithul trees in the mountains) and the production process, which ensures that the end-product is pure and unadulterated. All aspects of production are completed in the estate’s factory, and conform to the highest standards and hygienic conditions and is carried out under the direct supervision of experienced superintendents.
Once production is complete, the jaggery makes its way down the mountain, which is a quest in itself. The workers of the estate make the journey via a 6-kilometer trek through rugged jungle paths that meander past bubbling streams and roaring waterfalls. They brave the typical rainforest climate of heavy rain and strong winds, as well the dangers of snakes, leeches and insects that are characteristic of such a natural environment.
Sweetener Steeped in History
Kithul Jaggery been used by the Sri Lankans since ancient times. Nineteenth century historians mention its uses in their writings.
"This magnificent palm ... has found a place in the oldest records of Ceylon, sacred and historical," noted T.B. Pohath-Kehelpannala, a local historian and author, in an essay called The Kitul And Its Uses, published in 1898.
Despite its vital place in Sri Lanka cuisine, kithul jaggery is becoming something of a vanishing treasure as traditional production methods gives way to modern processes and tappers look for more lucrative professions.
At Kosgolla Estate, we aim to preserve this treasured tradition and the resulting pure product enjoyed by our country-men for generations.
Locally known as hakuru, kithul jaggery is usually paired with a hot cup of plain tea. Sri Lankan also delight in pairing it with 'kiri'; a creamy buffalo milk yogurt.
Kithul jaggery and kithul treacle are used in many traditional Sri Lankan sweet treats as well as in treats adopted from other cultures. It is used in halapa (pictured left), a unique kanda leaf-wrapped sweet and as the sweetener in Sinhalese and Tamil New Year treats like kavum (a deep-fried sweet made of rice flour and coconut milk), and aluwa (a flat, diamond-shaped sweet made of rice flour, cashew nuts).
Traceable to Source
The Kosgolla Estate is tucked away in the misty mountains of Ududumbara. Home to many endemic plants and animals, it is a true Sri Lankan haven.
For generations, the residents of the area have made their livelihoods by plucking cardamom and tapping the juice of the mountain kithul palm.
Our jaggery is sourced solely from this single estate and thus is traceable to source. Each Kosgolla Estate product contains a QR code which provides information on the product, source of ingredients and the individuals that were involved in plucking, tapping and/or manufacturing. Since no preservatives or other ingredients are added, you are guaranteed that the products you are consuming are unrefined, unadulterated, and 100% natural.
The People Behind the Product
To obtain kithul sap, our experienced tappers climb 100 foot tall kithul trees in the thick jungle. Once atop, they make sharp incisions at the base of a cluster of flowers that droop down from a branch and tie a jute sack to the base of the cluster to collect droplets of sap trickling down. The sap is collected over several days.
Once the sap is collected, it is boiled over an open wood fire, until it reduces to a sticky and intensely sweet syrup the color and thickness of honey, known as kithul pani.
The thick brown syrup that is produced from this process is then poured into coconut shells and left to harden– as is the tradition, which also gives the loaves of jaggery their distinctive half-globular shape.
Shown below are some of our tappers and their stories!
Meet The Tappers
Born and bred on this jungle estate VK epitomizes the perfect jungle boy. Well built, strong and agile he is one of the best tree climbers on the estate and likely in the island! He currently taps the highest number of kithul trees on the estate on the high slopes of Thotipallama. The terrain is steep and rugged, the kithul trees fighting to reach the top of the jungle canopy are over 100 feet tall. Tapping kithul trees here isn’t for the faint hearted. VK climbs each tree twice a day to collect sap which requires an enormous amount of skill and energy, which he posses in abundance. He is the idol on this estate!
SR is the youngest of 3 brothers on the estate and certainly the most mischievous of the three. He is an apt tree climber himself and has the gift of youth! He taps a third of the kithul trees in the lower division of the estate. He is resourceful and smart and ever willing to share the secrets and treasures of the jungle. He is definitely the rising star of the estate family!
RK is the eldest of the 3 brothers and taps the kithul trees of the upper division of the estate. The upper parts of these misty mountains posses the most challenging environments to work in. The weather is harsh, the undergrowth thick and leeches in abundance but you will never find RK without a smile. He also trains and helps his younger brother Selwar Kumar and together the two of them tap all the kithul trees in the upper division. The sap from the upper division is particularly rich and results in the unique taste of the Kosgolla jaggery!