Home ›› 20 Mar 2023 ›› Nation
Farmers of Cox’s Bazar’s Ramu upazila are leaning towards Indian jujube cultivation leaving their tobacco cultivation days behind.
Due to their taste and quality, the jujube cultivated in the upazila has gained popularity across the country. Ample demand and good prices of the fruit are inspiring more farmers to cultivate Indian jujube as opposed to other crops.
In Ramu’s Eidghar union, different varieties of Indian jujube plants adorn the fields on both sides of the highway leading to town. Several thousand kilogrammes of jujube are harvested every day from the orchards and sold all over the country.
The farmers of the area have become economically self-sufficient by cultivating jujube at a low cost. Due to low production costs, farmers do not have to take loans to begin jujube cultivation on a small scale.
Local farmers expect that if the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) provides training and support many unemployed youths will become encouraged to take up jujube cultivation. Jujube cultivation can create employment opportunities and economical enrichment for the upazila.
Rahim Ullah, a young entrepreneur of Eidghar said that there were hundreds of acres of unused fallow lands in the area that have now been brought under jujube cultivation.
“Many farmers of the area used to cultivate tobacco as it is one of the very few crops that grow well in the area. However, tobacco cultivation is expensive and the profit is only marginal, it was not a sustainable industry,” Rahim said, adding that the former tobacco farmers have now started cultivating jujube.
Due to the large size of the hybrid varieties, per kg is made up of only a handful of the fruit. The plants are also easy to tend to and harvest. Farmers have brought over 400 acres of land in the district under jujube
Journalist Abdur Rashid the neighbouring Naikhongchhari upazila of Bandarban said that the responsibility to expand agricultural cultivation as per Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's directives falls on everyone. The DAE should come forward in providing training and advice in order to expand fruit cultivation in the region and help the unemployed youth become
Md Kabir Hossain, Deputy Director of Cox's Bazar DAE, said, “Many young entrepreneurs are becoming self-reliant by cultivating jujube. Our department plans to take various initiatives including providing training to those interested in jujube cultivation.”
According to related sources, in the current season, jujube has been cultivated on about 400 acres of land in Cox’s Bazar district. An average of 600-700 kg of fruits are harvested from the orchards on a daily basis.
These fruits are being sold for Tk 30 per kg at a wholesale rate from the farms. The produce is then packaged and transported to different parts of the country.