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Farmers happy with tomato yield, prices

  • Our Correspondent
  • 19 January, 2022 12:00 AM
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RAJSHAHI: Tomato growers of Godagari upazila in Rajshahi district have been delighted with the good harvest this year thanks to the favourable weather.

The vegetable has brought smiles for tomato growers as it is so far proving to be profitable as market price is satisfactory.

Godagari upazila is famous for tomato cultivation and every season, tomatoes worth Tk several lakh are grown and traded in the upazila.

Tomato cultivation has been going on in the upazila for the last two decades and farmers witness a bumper production of tomato every year.

Many people of the upazila became self-reliant by cultivating tomatoes.

This year, the local agriculture officer set a target of bringing 3,500 hectares of land under tomato cultivation in 2021-2022 Robi seasons with an expectation of producing 65,000 tonnes of tomatoes in the district, said M Abdul Auwal, Deputy Director of Rajshahi Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE).

Already, 3,520 hectares of land have been brought under tomato cultivation in the district and of these, 2,980 hectares of land were brought under tomato cultivation in Godagari upazila, he said.

Rafiqul Islam, a farmer of Shibsagar village in Godagari upazila, said “I have brought five bighas of land under tomato cultivation and in the first batch I have harvested nine maunds of tomato. Each maund of tomato was sold at Tk 1800.”

He pointed out that the price of tomato fluctuates and at the end of the season, a syndicate of middlemen fixed the price of tomato, which caused losses for farmers.

However, he also expected to earn profit this year following the high yield of the vegetable.

According to DAE sources, some 3560 hectares have been brought under tomato cultivation in the fiscal year 2020-21 in the last five years in Rajshahi and the farmers were able to produce 82051 tonnes of tomato. During this period, the tomato growers in Godagari upazila have produced 66,575 tonnes after cultivating tomatoes in 2055 hectares of land.

The DAE official also said tomatoes of 35 varieties are being cultivated in the upazila.

“Tomato cultivation has proved profitable than other cash crops as 75 maund of tomatoes can be produced from one bigha of land,” he said.