Early aman harvests a blessing for flood-hit Netrokona farmers



Farmers in haor areas in Netrokona who had faced several floods this year are harvesting the early aman variety, in an encouraging development that would help them take home higher yield and prices.

The harvesting of the BRRI-75 variety comes earlier compared to other available varieties at the farmers level, said sources at the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) in Netrokona. The variety was cultivated on 467 acres of land mainly in Mohonganj, Barhatta and Netrokona sadar upazilas.

“The farmers are happy as they are reaping a good production. The price is also reasonable,” said Md Habibur Rahman, deputy director of the DAE in the district.

A maund of dry paddy is being sold at Tk 1,100 to Tk 1,200. The variety is harvested within 125-130 days, while other varieties need 145-150 days, said the deputy director.

As the harvesting comes much ahead of other varieties, the farmers get good prices and get more time to grow winter crops, including mustard and vegetables.

“The farmers would also be able to go for boro cultivation without any delay,” Rahman said, adding that the cost of labour is also low now thanks to the availability of farmworkers.

Md Mostafa Kamal, upazila agriculture officer in Mohonganj, said 700 farmers in the upazila cultivated the BRRI-75 rice variety for the second time this year and they produced 5.50 tonnes per hectare.

Muhaiminur Rashid, upazila agriculture officer in Barhatta, said the BRRI-75 variety was cultivated on 30 acres of land in the upazila and the farmers are happy thanks to good yield and fair price.

Akibur Rahman, a farmer in Durgapur village in Mohonganj, grew the variety on five acres of land and has got a good crop.

“I cultivated the variety for the second time this year. I will expand the acreage for the crop in the future as the early variety is very helpful,” said the 25-year old.

Yusuf Ali, a farmer from Naaljury village in the same upazila, cultivated 20 decimals of land this year and the good production has inspired him.

The target was to grow aman paddy on 132,425 hectares of land in the district this season. Finally, the crop was cultivated in134,625 hectares.

Some 120 floating seed-beds of BR-22, a late variety, were prepared in the flood-affected Sadar, Barhatta, Mohonganj, Khaliajury, Kalmakanda and Purbadhala upazila to support the poor and marginal farmers who suffered because of the back to back floods, said DAE officials. 

The samplings were distributed in early September.

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