Turmeric farming increases as the spice gets pricey | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, October 06, 2011 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, October 06, 2011

Gaibandha, Adjoining Districts

Turmeric farming increases as the spice gets pricey


Cultivation of turmeric gains popularity in Gaibandha and its adjoining districts due to high price of the spice. Photo shows a turmeric field of Bazarpara area in Sundarganj upazila of Gaibandha.Photo: STAR

Cultivation of turmeric, a kind of ground spice, has gained popularity in Gaibandha and adjoining districts due to its high price.
Farmers are now planting turmeric commercially. But it was not so even five years ago, when this herb grew without care on otherwise fallow land, plot boundaries and even in homesteads. In 2005, turmeric was cultivated in only 127 hectares of land.
According to district agriculture extension department (DAE)¬ this season 525 hectare lands have been brought under turmeric cultivation in seven upazilas of the district.
In Sadullapur upazila, around 150 hectares of land have been brought under turmeric cultivation. Of that 130 hectares are in Dhaperhat alone. In Gobindagnaj upazila, farming of the spice was done on 165 hectares. Last year it was cultivated on only 236 hectares in the district.
Dhaperhat is the main turmeric producing area and a very busy market of the spice as people from far-flung areas rush there for purchasing and selling raw, dried and powdered turmeric.
Last year turmeric produced in the district was worth over Tk 6 crore and the yield is expected to double this year as cultivation has increased significantly", said A H Bazlur Rashid, deputy director of AED, Gaibandha
"Once the item cultivated in these areas only for serving domestic purpose, but now it has become a pricey spice due to increased demand for its use in curries and antiseptic medicine", he added.
"Vegetables are being cultivated with turmeric as mixed crops, and so farmers get additional profit. Turmeric can be harvested twice in a season, once after 90 days and again after a month", he added.
"We can earn Tk 25,000-30,000 from each bigha cultivating turmeric and related vegetables with minimum production cost whereas paddy brings only Tk 7,000-8,000 from the same", said Afzal Hossain, a farmer of Dhaperhat.
"In 2008, the price of turmeric suddenly shot up. A kilogram of finished turmeric powder went up to Tk 360, whereas earlier it was sold at only Tk 70-80 per kg", said Hasen Ali, a trader of the area.
"Turmeric, specially Timla and local variety Sinduri, have huge demand in the market and wholesalers from distant areas of the country come here to buy it", said another trader Rafiqul of the same area.

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