Jute has been selling at the highest rate after independence of Bangladesh. The benefit, however, is being reaped by the middle men instead of jute growers.
After mixing sand and water to make the jute heavier, these middle men are selling per maund of jute for Tk 4,000-4,200 at the local markets and making profits.
Ananda Saha, a jute trader of Kanaipur bazar in Faridpur's Sadar upazila, said, "The supply in local market is very low, so the price is high. During the harvesting season, the government exported a big amount to India. So, most of the growers sold all their jute at that time."
Md Khokon Matbbar, another trader of the bazar, said, "I have been in this business since 1993. This year, I am seeing the highest rate of jute sales. However, some greedy middle men have been mixing sand and water to make the product weigh more and so, jute mill owners and exporters are being cheated."
Faraque Mollah, 41, a jute grower of the district's Nagarkanda upazila, said, "Jute growth was good but I had to suffer for the lack of water. We have to sell all the jute we grow to collect money for the cultivation of other crops. After we sold all the jute, the middle men stocked them up. Now, they are getting more profits than us."
Achamat Mollah, 34, another grower, added that because they haven't been making profit, many growers have lost their interest in the cultivation of jute.