RANGPUR: Farmers have produced 1,78,777 tonnes of clean Aush rice (2,68,165 tonnes of paddy) in all five districts of Rangpur agriculture region during the current season.
Officials of the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) said a target of producing 2,05,459 tonnes of clean Aush (3,08,188 tonnes of paddy) was fixed from 65,000 heaters of land for the region this time.
However, early flash floods damaged standing Aush rice crop on 2,533 hectares of land in the region this year.
“Farmers completed harvesting Aush rice on the remaining 61,147 hectares of land by yesterday producing 1,78,777 tonnes of clean rice at an excellent average yield rate of over 2.92 tonnes per hectare of land,” he said.
Aush rice farming and its production continued increasing as a result of pragmatic steps taken by the government in the last nine years in Rangpur region, largely contributing to ensuring food security despite adverse impacts of climate change.
The steps include distribution of special intensives among small and marginal farmers, conducting motivational campaigns and providing technical support to them.
“Farmers are showing more interest in Aush rice farming as an additional crop during the off-season after Boro rice harvest and before transplantation of Aman rice seedlings on the same land to enhance rice production,” Hossain said.
They produced 1.48 lakh tonnes of clean Aush rice from 47,552 hectares of land in 2019, 1.23 lakh tonnes of clean Aush rice from 40, 618 hectares of land in 2018, 73,543 tonnes of clean Aush rice from 24,717 hectares in 2017 in the region.
“Besides, farmers produced 65,505 tonnes of Aush rice from 21,751 hectares of land in 2016, 61,676 tonnes from 21,063 hectares in 2015, 59,685 tonnes from 19,205 hectares in 2014 and 51,722 tonnes from 17,523 hectares of land in 2013,” he added.
Talking to the agency, farmers Habibur Rahman, Ariful Haque and Fazlur Rahman of Rangpur said they got bumper output of Aush crop and its excellent market prices between Taka 1,050 and 1,150 per mound (every 40 kilogram) of the paddy this time.
Senior Coordinator (Agriculture and Environment) of RDRS Bangladesh Agriculturist Mamunur Rashid told the national news agency that Aush rice farming is increasing pleasingly following various effective steps taken by the government in the last 14 years.
He favoured expanded cultivation of less irrigation water consuming and short duration Aush rice as an additional crop using unused seasonal rainwater during May, June and July on the lands that remain fallow during the off season.
“After harvesting Aush rice by mid-August, farmers are easily cultivating Aman rice on the same land further increasing crop intensity and rice production alongside contributing to attain sustainable food security,” Rashid added.