Farmers in the Chapainawabganj district are poised to surpass their production targets for boro rice this year, aiming to harvest 253,780 metric tonnes, thanks to a surge in interest spurred by last season's bumper yield. The Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) has outlined an ambitious plan to cultivate boro rice across 52,200 hectares of land. The cultivation efforts are distributed across various upazilas, with 13,220 hectares in Sadar, 15,720 in Gomastapur, 6,250 in Bholahat, 9,680 in Nachole, and 7,330 hectares in Shibganj. Farmers like Kawsar Ali from Sadar upazila are busy preparing their fields and sowing boro seeds. Ali, who has dedicated eight bighas of land to boro cultivation, noted the rising costs of production, attributing them to increased labor and irrigation expenses. Similarly, Mayez Uddin pointed out the hike in land plowing costs from Tk 300 to Tk 350, alongside rising labor charges. Govt to provide Tk 108 crore as incentive to boost Boro production: Ministry Paddy workers, enduring the winter chill to plant boro, like Madan, highlighted that the current rate of Tk 500 for planting helps cover their household expenses despite the hard work. Dr. Palash Sarkar, Deputy Director of DAE, remains optimistic about this year's prospects. He mentioned the widespread adoption of the Ufsi boro variety, ensuring there's no shortage of seeds or fertilizers. Furthermore, irrigation has been smooth due to reliable power supply, and farmers have received all necessary guidance from agricultural officials. With these favorable conditions, Dr. Sarkar anticipates that the boro rice production target will not only be met but exceeded, signaling a successful and productive season ahead for the farmers of Chapainawabganj. Half of Boro paddy procurement target not achieved yet, Food Minister tells JS
For the first time, a consignment of bean produced in Chattogram’s Sitakunda upazila has been exported to Italy, raising hope among farmers of the upazila which is already famous for vegetable production. Farmers and agriculture officials said Sitakunda upazila is known for production of variety of vegetables including beans. Beans are seen on vast lands on both sides of the Dhaka-Chittagong highway, on cropland, land alley, on both sides of the railway tracks, fallow land, embankments and even in hill slopes, they said. Read more: Prospects of Safe Broiler Chicken Farming The beans produced here are usually supplied to different parts of the country and this is the first time that this bean has been exported to Italy. Farmers said that although raw beans are sold in winter, dry bean seeds are sold throughout the year. Upazila Agriculture Officer said Md Habibullah said the soil of Sitakunda is suitable for bean cultivation and bean cultivation is more profitable than Boro paddy. “As a result, bean has been cultivated on 2,650 hectares of land in this upazila. This year, 47,000 metric tons of beans worth over Tk 100 crore will be produced.” Read more: Youth's success in orange farming sparks an agricultural trend in Kurigram
In the ever-evolving food industry, broiler chicken is one of the most popular preferences. This article delves into the subject of safe broiler chicken, a key issue in the future of the poultry industry. Let's find out how this chicken farming system plays an essential role in the food industry. What is Safe Broiler Chicken? The misuse of antibiotics in broiler farming has surfaced as a global public health menace, propelling the surge in popularity of antibiotic-free broiler meat production on a global scale. In this paradigm shift, emphasis is placed on alternative methods in broiler production in Bangladesh as well. The safe broiler system prioritizes animal health, a conducive environment, and high product quality. This approach emphasizes the absence of hazardous ingredients, including antibiotics and growth hormones. It fosters a bio-preservative system and incorporates herbal supplements in animal feed. The result is poultry reared in an eco-friendly manner, embodying the essence of safety and health consciousness in every aspect of production. Consumers increasingly seek assurance in their food choices. Meanwhile, the emergence of these chickens heralds a positive shift towards sustainable, health-centric practices in the poultry industry. Read more: 10 Best Winter Teas to Fight Cold and Flu Recent Advances in Broiler Breeding Md. Shafiqul Islam, a professor in the pharmacology department at Bangladesh Agricultural University, and his associate Md. Abu Raihan Parvez has recently achieved breakthrough success in alternative broiler production. They were able to produce broilers without any form of antibacterial agents, using different types of herbal plant extracts in their laboratory. In their research on broilers, they predominantly utilized various types of herbal extracts, noting their superior efficacy compared to antibiotics. The broilers exhibited significant weight gain, and this increase was notably rapid. Moreover, the rate of morbidity and mortality among them was remarkably low. This research program, spanning five years, holds the potential for a significant leap toward the development of a more advanced poultry industry if implemented on a large scale. Read more: Microwave Cooking: 7 Healthy Chicken Breast Recipes
In Chapainawabganj district, the abundant harvest of summer onions and favorable market prices have delighted local farmers. The successful cultivation of the N-53 variety has made this season particularly profitable. The Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) played a pivotal role in this success. They provided farmers with essential resources, including 1 kg of N-53 onion seeds, 20 kg of fertilizers (MoP and DAP), pesticides, and Tk 2,800 in cash for labor costs per bigha of land. Habiganj admin sets limits on onions purchase by retailers and consumers This comprehensive support was part of a government initiative benefiting 4,500 farmers. Additionally, the DAE offered crucial training, which contributed to the bumper yield. During a visit to Ghorapakhia in the Sadar upazila, the scene was one of industriousness, with farmers diligently harvesting their crops. Sayem Ali, a local farmer, shared his experience: "I've grown onions before, but the N-53 variety has brought an unprecedented yield. I'm expecting to harvest 108 maunds per bigha and, with favorable weather, even 120 maunds." He further noted the profitable market prices, with one maund selling for Tk 2,200. Despite investing Tk 30,000 of his own funds, the returns have been encouraging. Sayem intends to continue with N-53 cultivation, irrespective of government incentives. Govt directs to intensify field-level monitoring on onion prices
A young entrepreneur in Kurigram's Sadar upazila is reaping the benefits of orange farming, exemplifying self-reliance after completing his education. Abu Raihan Faruk, the enterprising youth, anticipates doubling his investment from selling a high-yield variety of oranges originating from China. Raihan, who finished his studies three years ago, chose entrepreneurship over job hunting. He started to cultivate various local and foreign fruits like mango, orange and grapes on his six-acre farm two and a half years ago. Recognizing the high demand for oranges in the local market, he focused on expanding his orange cultivation. Successful malta cultivation raises hope among farmers in Thakurgaon’s Ranishankail Starting with a single plant of the Chinese orange variety acquired from Bogura district, Raihan successfully grew 100 orange trees through graft cutting in just one and a half years. Encouraged by this success, he invested in commercial cultivation by dedicating two bigha of land to orange farming with an investment of Tk 20,000. Raihan found orange farming relatively hassle-free, requiring only compost fertilizer, pesticides, and anti-fungus spray for a healthy yield. He confidently expects to double his profits this year. He anticipates selling 15-20 maunds of oranges. The potential revenue from his orange harvest is estimated at Tk 80,000. Raihan also highlights the significant demand for oranges in Bangladesh, which currently relies on imports. He believes that local commercial cultivation could meet domestic needs and eventually lead to exporting oranges. Mohammad Kabir Hossain, a visitor to Raihan's orchard, is inspired by Raihan's success and plans to venture into orange farming himself. Biplab Kumar Mohonto, the deputy director of Kurigram's Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE), acknowledged the novelty of orange cultivation in the district and offered support to Raihan. Returnee-migrant bets future on Malta farming in Rajshahi Raihan's journey illustrates how innovative agricultural practices can transform the livelihoods of young entrepreneurs and potentially reshape the agricultural landscape of districts like Kurigram.
Farmers in Narail district are seeing profits multiplied up to six times by growing off-season watermelons in Kalia upazila, thanks to the local agricultural department officials for introducing hybrid variants of watermelons in the area. Normally, February to April is the season of the mouth-watering summer fruit but officials of the local Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) introduced hybrid variants in Kalia upazila during monsoon. A total of eight hectares of land in Kalia upazila are being used to grow the off-season watermelons, with a target to produce 15 tonnes of the fruit per hectare. The DAE officials provided fertilizers, seeds and cash to the farmers and with their help, watermelons are being cultivated along the bank of the fish enclosures and waterbodies in Gobindanagar, Salamabad, and Bhaktadanga areas. On a remote char in country's poorest district, watermelon cultivation transforms lives Farmers are growing Asian-2, Tripti and Black Baby hybrid variants of watermelon. These variants taste sweet and delicious, they say. Farmers say they spent Tk 15,000-20,000 per hectare and sold watermelons worth Tk 1.5 lakh to 2 lakh per hectare. Sheikh Kamal Hossain, a resident of Bhaurir Char in the upazila and assistant professor at Nabadanga Degree College, said, “I took training from Dumuria upazila of Khulna district and after that, I have planted 1000 saplings of watermelon on seven acres of land along the fish enclosures on an experimental basis last year. I have earned Tk 2 lakh from this.” This year, he planted 2000 saplings on the same land after spending Tk 70,000. He expects to earn Tk 4 lakh from watermelon production this year. Rain, hailstorm worry Khulna watermelon growers Pradeep Kumar Barman, councilor of ward-6 under Kalia municipality, said this year he planted 12,000 saplings along the bank of 150 bigha of fish enclosures during monsoon. “So far I have spent Tk 10 lakh. Within 35 days, flowers started to bloom and I started harvesting watermelon within 60-65 days of planting. Each watermelon weighs almost 4 kg.” He also expected to produce 2 lakh kgs of watermelon this year and if the market prices remain favorable, he could be able to earn Tk 40 lakh. Low price dims the joy of watermelon growers in Khulna despite bumper harvest Depak Kumar Roy, deputy director of Narail DAE, said the farmers are earning profits up to six times considering their expenditure, within 60-65 days of cultivation. “We are providing all-out support through using smart technology and providing fertilizer and pesticides for good production of watermelon.” Eva Mallik, Kalia Upazila Agriculture Officer, said “Watermelon is no longer a seasonal fruit now, and it can be produced throughout the year. Flowers start to bloom within 40-50 days of planting saplings and 70-80 days are needed for harvesting.” Most of the farmers in the district are showing interest in cultivating the off-season hybrid watermelon on their lands as it has proven to be profitable, he said. Read more: Bangladesh can go for Chinese perennial rice farming to reduce cost and labour
Watermelon cultivation has started in the remote char area of the Brahmaputra River in Kurigram. Although watermelon cultivation started on an experimental basis last year, the number of farmers signing up to the this time. The yield has also been as expected. Farmers are hoping for double the profit if there is no flood in advance this year. However, if the government comes forward in marketing and banks provide loans with easy instalments, the misery of the people of the char area can be erased, or at least eased. Also read: Rain, hailstorm worry Khulna watermelon growers According to the Kurigram Department of Agricultural Extension, there are about 450 chars in 16 rivers in the district. There are about 45,000 hectares of cultivable land. Of these, farmers are starting cultivation on 35,000 hectares of land in 368 chars. Maize, watermelon, sweet pumpkin, cucumber and pepper have been cultivated in these char areas. Last year, watermelon was cultivated on 50 acres of land in Char Bagua village of Hatia union of Ulipur upazila of the district. In the early floods, 40 acres of crops were submerged and damaged. Yet the farmers did not stop. This year watermelon has been cultivated on 34 hectares of land in the char. Farmers have also started harvesting watermelons. Due to favorable weather conditions, the yield has also been as expected. As a result, they are hoping to make a good profit this time after overcoming last year's loss. However, the biggest obstacle to commercial cultivation in the char is marketing management. Besides, many farmers have left the land after being unable to cultivate these crops despite the desire, the banks not providing loans to the common farmers. Read More: Floating vegetable farmers in Pirojpur devastated by low prices Dashim Uddin of Bagua Char said three enterprising farmers have cultivated watermelon on 40 acres of land in this char. As a result of getting a large amount of loan from the bank, they have got the opportunity to cultivate on a large scale. Many farmers here have become interested in their farming, but they are not able to come forward due to economic reasons. Abdur Sabur, who cultivated watermelon, said, “Although watermelon was cultivated on an experimental basis last year, the watermelon field was washed away in the early floods. This year, I have cultivated watermelon on 14 acres of land. It cost me Tk6-7 lakh. I hope to pick up 20,000 watermelons. This will earn me an additional income of Tk6-7 lakh. However, the problem here is marketing watermelon. Wholesalers come here and buy watermelons at a lower price. If we could take melons to the city and sell, we would have made more profits. More farmers would have come forward to cultivate watermelon.” Read More: Bagerhat fruit farmer eyes foreign markets to expand thriving business The farmer also said watermelon seeds should be sown at the beginning of the month of Paush. After four months, watermelon can be lifted in the middle of chaitra month. There are some precautions to be taken in watermelon cultivation. In the sand land, a hole of one and a half feet in the 10-inch by 10-inch square has to be given some loamy soil, dung fertilizer and DSP in the pit. Forty grams should be given in each pit. In this way, after keeping it for a week, three seeds are sown in a pit. In addition, regularly insecticides have to be sprayed to protect against the attack of insects and rats. Abul Hossain Master, former chairman of Hatia Union, said at present, local entrepreneurs in the char area have become interested in cultivating various agricultural products. Due to economic problems, the rest of the farmers are unable to come forward. “Their misery would go away if banks and NGOs come forward.” Additional Deputy Director (Crops) of Kurigram DAE, Md Azizul Islam, said watermelon cultivation has started in the district since last year. Watermelon has been cultivated on 22,000 hectares of land this year. There is a plan to set up a collection center in the char areas so that the farmers do not suffer for marketing. Read More: Exporters want green signal for commercial cultivation of King Prawn
Farmers engaged in vegetable farming — on floating beds made of hyacinth and bamboo — in Nazirpur and Nesarabad upazilas of Pirojpur district are devastated by low prices of their produce. Though the farmers keep themselves engaged in cultivating vegetables, taking advantage of the availability of hyacinth in the region, anxiety over low prices has gripped them. According to the district’s Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE), farmers in the region have been farming vegetables, using the floating method, for over a century. Some 3,200 farmers of the upazilas cultivate several varieties of vegetables including papaya, gourd, pumpkin, beans, okra, tomato, eggplant and cabbage. Read More: Climate change: Shrimp farming endangered in Khulna The vegetable seedlings produced on the beds are usually sold at upazilas of the district and other parts of the country but this year the sales are not seeing a momentum due to poor response from buyers. Though it was targeted to produce 86,50,000 saplings on 175 hectares of land, it exceeded the target due to favourable weather. Earlier, a bunch of 100 saplings was sold at Tk 250 to 300 but the price is now Tk 150 to 200. The sale of saplings goes on from June to November every year. Some areas including Deulbari-Dobra, Kalardoyania and Malikhai under Nazirpur upazila and most parts of Baldiya union under Nesarabad upazila remain under 5 to 8 feet water round the year, causing no production of any crop. Read more: Bumper T-Aman yield, good price delight Sirajganj farmers The farmers said they usually take loans from local money lenders for usury and lands as sublease for cultivating vegetables and producing saplings. The farmers are bound to take loans from the lenders with a high usury because of failure to manage loans from the banks during the Robi, Kharif-1 and 2 seasons. They are deprived of bagging a good profit due to the high interest on the loans, they said. Hoping assistance from the government, the farmers said they don’t get the desired prices by selling produce due to natural disasters, damages of crops, low price, disadvantages in marketing and lack of preservation. Read More: Tulip farming opens new opportunity for farmers in Tetulia, Jashore Local farmer Jamal Hossain said he is used to cultivating vegetables on the floating beds made of hyacinth and bamboo in the water bodies taken on sublease. “I have 15 to 16 beds where I cultivate several types of vegetables including beans, papaya, tomato, chili and gourd,” he said. “We have not been getting a reasonable price due to lack of dealers caused by the Covid-19 pandemic,” he claimed, adding that an amount of Tk 7,000 to 10,000 is needed to cultivate vegetables and produce saplings on a 60-hand long bed. Dr Md Nazrul Islam Sikdar, deputy director of the district’s DAE, told UNB that some 60 to 70 percent farmers of Gaokhali, Monohorpur, Delbari and Malikhali areas under Nazipur upazila have been involved with vegetable farming on floating beds. Read more: Vegetable farming on floating beds gets popular in Sylhet “We inform the farmers on maintaining quality and visit their croplands to give training,” he said. Urging high officials of the agricultural ministry to take measures to offer loans on easy conditions, the farmers said that it will be difficult to keep vegetable cultivation on floating beds going unless loans from banks are made easy.
Already hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic, shrimp farmers in Bagerhat district have been dealt another severe blow this year -- incessant showers and consequent tidal surges. This year, shrimps, crabs and different species of fish worth over Tk 6 crore have been swept away by tidal surges with more than 8,000 shrimp enclosures going under water across the southern district, pushing many farmers to the brink of starvation. In Chanditola village of Bagerhat’s Rampal upazila, for instance, most of the farmers have lost their shrimp enclosures to the late-monsoon showers and tidal surges. READ: Bagerhat fruit farmer eyes foreign markets to expand thriving business. The scenario is the same in villages across other upazilas of the district, prompting the District Shrimp Farmers’ Association to demand from the government an insurance scheme for their members to protect them from such unexpected losses.
Kamrul Hasan, a farmer from Bagerhat, has found massive success in recent years in cultivating foreign fruits. After racking up revenues of Tk 2.7 million annually selling the yield from his 21-bigha orchard, Kamrul is now thinking of expanding his business by exporting the fruits abroad. Visiting Kamrul’s orchard in Shiyalkathi village under Bagerhat’s Kochua upazila, UNB found the place filled with numerous varieties of local and foreign fruits, including Dragon Fruit, Malta Fruit, Mango, Guava, Lime, Orange, Pineapple, Wood Apple, Sugar Apple, Custard Apple etc. Inspired by Kamrul’s work, many people from the area are joining the fruit farming business. Customers are also coming to the orchard on a regular basis to buy fruits directly from the grower. Read: Drought hampering Aman production in Bagerhat Even the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) has dubbed Kamrul a "successful fruit farmer".