April 21, 2024, 8:57 pm

Chilli farming gets a boost on northern Chars

  • Update Time : Tuesday, January 2, 2024
  • 91 Time View

ASHRAFUL ISLAM JOY:

Farmers of different Chars (shoal) in the northern region especially Sirajganj, Bogura, Pabna, Rangpur and Gaibandha district are inclining into chilli farming as some renowned spice producing companies of the country have started chilli collecting from here for the last few years with reasonable prices due to good yield of chilli and development of communication facilities in the area.

Silted lands of different shoals are appropriate for chilli farming. Besides, farmers are getting reasonable prices due to high demand of chilli in the country’s markets. Some renowned and domestic spice producing companies including Square, ACI and PRAN are now collecting chilli from northern region with fair prices as the soil of different shoals including Jamuna Char becomes appropriate to produce huge amount of chilli each year due to siltation during the flooding.

According to the Agriculture Extension Department (AED), farmers normally cultivate local and hybrid species of chilli on their lands for the span of a time since October to March each year. Farmers are also able to harvest chilli from their lands after 60 to 70 days of planting saplings. They can harvest chilli once in a week and it continues for about three months.

This year, about 5650 hectares of lands have brought under chilli cultivation in 12 upazilas of Bogura district along with a production target of 16,102 tonnes, while chilli has been cultivated on 1456 hectares of lands in nine upazila of Sirajganj district with a production target of 3204 tonnes.

Similarly, AED has set up a production target of 20,850 tonnes chilli on 2050 hectares of land in Rangpur district.

Of them, bulk portion of chilli has been cultivated in Shariakandi, Sonatola and Dhunot upazila of Bogura district, Kazipur, Chowhali, Belkuchi, Shahzadpur and Sirajganj Sadar upazila in Sirajganj district, Pirganj, Mithapukur, Taraganj, Gangachara, Kawnia, Badarganj, Pirgachha and Rangpur Sadar upazila in Rangpur district.

Md. Motlubur Rahman, DD of AED in Bogura told The Daily Sky that, “Farmers in the region face difficulties each year due to massive erosion by different rivers including Jamuan. Vast tract of croplands are devoured by the rivers each year putting the farmers at risk of losses. But, floods bring delight for sometimes. Siltation caused by the floods makes the shoal lands fertile in which there is no need to use huge proportion of fertilizers and pesticides.

Amzad Hossain, 42, a farmer of Chargodagari village in Shariakandi upazila of Bogura district said, “I got 100 mounds of red chilli last year by cultivating 4 bighas of land. This year, I have got 120 mounds of chilli from the same lands. Half of the chilli has already sold to a spice producing company with a good price. I have now decided to cultivate chilli on more lands in future due to such good yield and profit.”

Solaiman Ali, 35, a farmer of Nischintapur Char in Sirajganj district said, “Most of our Char land become uncultivable due to emergence of sand. But, such type of lands are appropriate for chilli farming. This is why, most of the farmers in the region cultivate chilli on their lands after recession of flood water instead of cultivating other crops.”

Billal Hossain, 32, another farmer of Tekanir Char in the same district said, “I have earned Tk 2 lakh in this season by selling chilli in the market. This year, the prices of chilli breached records of the history and reached to Tk 1000 per kg. Still now, the price has not become stable. It fluctuates from Tk 60 to Tk 200 per kg after few days on various pretexts. So, chilli cultivation has now become a profitable part of living for the Char people.”

Bablu Kumer Sutradhar, DD of AED in Sirajganj told The Daily Sky that, “Farmers of shoal areas like to cultivate chilli on their sandy land due to cheaper cost than other crops. Besides, bumper production of chilli with low cost makes them so much interested. If the trend continues, northern region may turn into a hub of chilli business in future.”

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