RAJSHAHI: Agricultural scientists and researchers have urged the farmers to cultivate Batabi Lebu-3 variety more to meet its gradual demands and nutritional value.
They also urged the field level agricultural extension officials, staff and others concerned to make the variety popular among the grassroots farmers so they can derive total benefits of the newly innovated variety.
Bangladesh Agriculture Research Institute (BARI) organized the programme with financial assistance of the project for strengthening research on horticulture crops and transfer of technology of field crops to Char areas. Additional Secretary (Research) of the Ministry of Agriculture Komolaranjan Das addressed the meeting as the chief guest. Joint Secretary Saiful Islam, Director of Sugar Crop Research Institute Dr Samajit Kumar Pal and Additional Director of the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) Sirajul Islam spoke as special guests.
FRS Principal Scientific Officer Dr Alim Uddin chaired the meeting. Dr Alim Uddin told the meeting that high yielding, medium plant, deep green leaf with heart shaped wings, medium sized, juice sac rosy, soft, bitter- less, sweet, very juicy and very easy peeling are the main characteristics of the variety.
He also said the high yielding BARI Batabilebu-3 variety has already gained popularity everywhere in the region for the last couple of years due to its productivity and profitability.
Dr Alim said the fruit is enriched with sweetness and vitamin-C and plays an important role in improving the rural economy due to its economic value.
He said the Rajshahi and its adjacent areas have been regarded as the country's most prospective fruit producing region. Production of fruit is one of the major income-generating activities in the region. Komolaranjan Das urged the attending farmers to produce safe fruit through adopting the bio and organic fertilization and pest management method for the greater interests of protecting the public health from any sorts of hazards. He urged them to cultivate the fruit varieties developed by BARI as those are favourite to the consumers in general and economically viable. Later, the guests and scientists visited the batabi lebu orchard in the centre compound and witnessed the farming and production process.