RANGPUR: The farmers and officials of the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) are expecting abundant jute output despite a little shortfall in the fixed farming target in Rangpur agriculture region.
DAE Officials here said tender jute plants are growing superbly amid favourable climate conditions, predicting an abundant production of the fibre crop as its harvest will begin from the next month, reports BSS.Horticulture Specialist of DAE at its regional office here Khondker Md Mesbahul Islam on Monday told the agency that a target of producing over 6.77-lakh bales of jute fibre has been fixed from 58,250 hectares of land for the region during the current season.
Farmers will have to produce 6.42-lakh bales of ‘Tosha’ variety jute fibre from 54,400 hectares of land, 30,192 bales of ‘Deshi’ variety fibre from 3,400 hectares and 3,726 bales of ‘Mechta’ variety of jute from 450 hectares of land in the region, he said.
“However, farmers have finally brought 49,792 hectares of land under jute cultivation, less by 8,458 hectares of land than the fixed farming target, this season in all five districts of the region,” he said.
Of them, farmers have cultivated jute on 7,630 hectares of land in Rangpur, 13,415 hectares in Gaibandha, 16,487 hectares in Kurigram, 3,565 hectares in Lalmonirhat and 8,695 hectares in Nilphamari districts under Rangpur agriculture region.
“The fixed jute farming target could not be achieved due to cultivation of Aus rice and maize on more land area, shortage of locally produced quality jute seed and lack of farmers’ confidence on imported jute seed for poor quality,” Islam added.
Regional Additional Director of the DAE Muhammad Ali said the government has declared jute as national agricultural product and made use of jute sacs mandatory in various sectors to popularise its cultivation and increase demand for ensuring fair price.The DAE, Bangladesh Agriculture Development Corporation, other recommended government and non-government organisations and dealers supplied locally produced high quality jute seed as well as imported jute seed to farmers this season.
“In addition to this, the government has taken ample steps and field level agriculture officials are assisting farmers to expand jute cultivation to revive past glory of the fibre,” he said.
Necessary training and inputs have been provided to farmers for separating and rotting of jute fibre adopting latest technologies to ensure better quality jute fibre and get higher price, Ali added.
Talking to the agency, farmers Mahmudul Islam, Ekramul Haque, Zabed Ali and Hafizur Rahman Bakul of village Najirdigar in Rangpur Sadar said tender jute plants are growing excellently on their crop lands predicting bumper production.