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4 lakh tonnes mustard seed produced in Rajshahi

Nation Desk
29 Mar 2023 00:00:00 | Update: 28 Mar 2023 22:51:02
4 lakh tonnes mustard seed produced in Rajshahi

Around 4.34 lakh tonnes of mustard seeds have been harvested during the current season, up by 1.27 lakh tonnes compared to the previous season, in Rajshahi division.

Additional Director of the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) Shamsul Wadud said the mustard cultivation was achieved on around 2.77 lakh hectares of land in all eight districts of the division, while the previous year’s acreage was 2.13 lakh hectares.

The DAE had set the target to bring 2.47 lakh hectares of land under cash crop farming but the enthusiastic farmers cultivated it on around 2.77 lakh hectares of land exceeding the target by 28,878 hectares.

Suitable climate conditions, high-yielding varieties, modern technologies and government incentives were reasons for exceeding the targets of both acreage and yield this season, he said.

Agriculturist Wadud said most of the lands were brought under cultivation of high-yielding varieties including BARI Sharisha-9, BARI Sharisha-11, BARI Sharisha-13, BARI Sharisha-16, BARI Sharisha-17 and BARI Sharisha- 18.

He said 2.07 lakh farmers were given seeds and fertilisers worth around Tk 5.58 crore free of cost for cultivating mustard in the division under the government’s agriculture incentive programme.

In addition to the DAE, various other research and development organisations like Bangladesh Agriculture Research Institute (BARI) and many NGOs had taken adequate steps in collaboration with other line departments to boost the mustard yield.

BARI has released 16 high-yielding mustard seed varieties. Farmers in the barind tract are seen cultivating three of those - BARI Sharisha-14, BARI Sharisha-17 and BARI Sharisha-18 varieties for the last couple of years.

But, BARI Sharisha 14 has become popular for its bold grain, high yielding, yellow colour, high oil extraction percentage and less-water consuming characteristics.

With this breakthrough, the landless and marginal farmers had brought vast tracts of the sandy char lands under mustard cultivation in the Ganges basins and the crops had grown up excellently everywhere in the region.

DASCOH Foundation, an NGO, on behalf of its Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) Project has been working for promoting various less-water consuming crops like mustard supported by Switzerland, said Jahangir Alam Khan, coordinator of the project.