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India is at the origin of Cattle, buffalo meat residue found in Indus Valley vessels

10th December, 2020 Art & Culture

Context: A new study has found the presence of animal products, including cattle and buffalo meat, in ceramic vessels dating back about 4,600 years at seven Indus Valley Civilisation sites in present-day Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.

  • The study, analysed the lipid residue in pottery found at the ancient sites.
  • About 50-60% of domestic animal bones found at Indus Valley sites come from cattle/buffalo.
  • The high proportions of cattle bones may suggest a cultural preference for beef consumption across Indus populations, supplemented by the consumption of mutton/lamb,”.
  • The study was the first to look into the absorbed lipid residues in pottery from multiple sites, including Rakhigarhi, Farmana and Masudpur.
  • Cattle bones have been found in large numbers at Indus Valley sites, the study found little evidence of dairy products.
  • There could be regional differences as a recent study of vessels in Gujarat had found evidence of dairy products.