Jute farmers gather with their produces at Sariakandi Sadar Haat (weekly market) in Bogra. The district saw a good production of the fibre while the growers were getting fair prices of it this season. PHOTO: STAR
Jute farmers in Thakurgaon, Panchagarh and Bogra districts are happy due to good production of the fibre and its fair prices in the local markets.
Though the farmers had been facing trouble at the initial stage of jute cultivation season because of a drought like situation but they overcame the problem by ensuring irrigation through using water lifting pumps.
They also faced trouble in rotting the fibre due to scanty rainfall in the harvesting season but somehow managed it efficiently, report our correspondents.
Jute was cultivated on 8,330 hectares of land against the target of 10,530 hectares with the production target of one lakh 11,357 bales in Thakurgaon.
In Panchagarh, jute was cultivated on 9,990 hectares of land against the target of 10,067 hectares with the production target of one lakh 7,572 bales, said sources at the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) office in the districts.
Of them, Tosha variety of jute covered about 85 percent of cultivated land and local variety covered 15 percent and the quality of harvested jute is good, farmers and DAE officials said.
Each maund (one maund is equal to 40 kg) of raw jute is being sold between Tk 1100 and Tk 1250 in the local markets of the two districts this season, depending on quality. The market prices of jute is higher than the previous year, according to market sources.
Sirajul Islam, a farmer of Sakoya village under Boda upazila in Panchagarh told our Thakurgaon correspondent that he cultivated jute on two bighas (one bigha is equal to 0.33 acare) of land in the current season and produced 15 maunds of raw jute, spending just Tk 7000. He sold his produce at Tk 18000. He also hoped that he would be able to sell his jute sticks for Tk 4000 and so, his net profit would be about Tk 15000.
Robiul Hasan, a farmer of Bhangapul village in Thakurgaon Sadar upazila said, if the government ensured fair prices of the cash crop by fixing its prices in time, the farmers would have been benefited and encouraged more to cultivate it.
Replying to a query, Rabiul said, this year he cultivated jute on three bighas of land instead of five bighas, as he was deprived of fair prices last year and incurred loss.
However, the farmers in these districts are getting interest in jute cultivation as they got good return for the last several years. Only last year they were deprived of fair prices, sources said.
Vice-President of Thakurgaon Chamber of Commerce and Industries Murad Hossain said, after banning of polythine bags, demand of environment-friendly and diversified jute goods was increasing day by day nationally and internationally.
"So this is the time for regaining the lost glory of the golden fibre," he said.
Our Bogra Correspondent said that the jute farmers in the district were getting higher prices this year, compared to the last year's.
Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) officials said that this year, 17,000 hectares of land was targeted for jute cultivation in the district. However, the item was produced on around 16,000 hectares.
The jute production target in the district in the current season was 1,88,000 bales, they said.
A farmer of Phulbari Haat area in Shariakandi upazila, Abdul Jalil, said he had cultivated jute on five bighas of land and produced 35 maunds of jute.
He spent Tk. 25 thousand and hoped tomake a profit of around Tk. 22 thousand by selling the produce in the local market.
Moez Uddin, another jute farmer of the area, said he produced 18 maunds of jute on 2.5 bighas of land and hoped to earn around Tk. 15 thousand.
"I sold per maund jute at Tk. 1400 in the markets while I had to spend around Tk. 900 for per maund production of the fibre," he said.
The prices of jute is now higher compared to the prices in the last few years, said jute buyer Saidur Rahman in Sadar Haat under Shariakandi municipality area.