The floating market on Bhimruli canal in Jhalakathi district sees buying and selling of huge quantity of guava but the local growers, failing to carry the popular fruit to other districts for sale due to communications problem, are compelled to sell the item for a meagre Tk 1 or 2 a kg at present. PHOTO: STAR
Awfully low prices frustrate guava growers in the district famous for quality varieties of the popular fruit.
Guava in the local market is now selling for as low as Tk 1 per kg while the price goes up to Tk 40-50 when the item reaches the capital and other areas of the country.
The situation has arisen as most of the profit goes to the middlemen, said farmers.
"I had to sell guava for Tk 30 per maund (40 kg) this season," said farmer Amulya Mondol who came to sell his produce at Bhimruli, the biggest floating guava market in Jhalakathi district.
Buyers from different areas come with large engine boats to buy the fruit in large amounts.
“I buy per kg of guava for Tk 2 to 5 and sell it for Tk 15 to 20 in different areas including Dhaka, Chittagong, Sylhet and Comilla. I would give the sellers better price if the communications were good,” said Shah Alam Jamaddar, who is engaged in the business for 35 years.
Local farmers have demanded establishing a fruit processing factory where they can sell their fruits for fair prices.
“In last year, we trained 25 farmers for making jam and jelly from the fruits but they hardly utilise the knowledge,” said Abul Hossen Mia, agriculture extension officer of Jhalakathi Sadar.