The cultivation of jute is increasing here day by day, but the farmers are frustrated as they did not get fair price of their produce during the start of the season.
The farmers have increased the production of jute following the government’s attempt to regain the lost glory of jute. But, they are not seeing any light of hope since they cannot recover even their production cost.
The farmers have cultivated jute on more 326 hectares of lands this season than the last season.
After harvesting potato in the Bengali month of Falgun, the farmers cultivate jute in the same land. During the month of Chaitra, they sow jute seeds. They apply fertilisers at that time. After the jute plants get mature in the month of Ashar, the farmers harvest jute and rot those in the water for consecutive 21 days. After the jute plants get rotten, the fibre is extracted from the stem.
This year an average farmer is spending Tk 1,000 to 1,100 in jute production while per maund of jute fibre is selling at Tk 1,100 to 1,200 from the early stages of the season. At this time last year, per maund of jute fibre was sold at Tk 1,800 to 2,200. Later, the price came down to Tk 1,300 to 1,500.
Now, jute is being rotted in some places of the district while in some places jute fibre is being extracted. Some are selling the jute in the market. Wholesalers are buying jute from villages.
The farmers said, the price of jute is going low on the start of the selling season. After some days, the price may fall further. As a result, their hard toil is coming of no use.
Sources at the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) in Munshiganj said, two kinds of jute- local and Tosha are produced here. Of those, the price of Tosha variety is higher. This year jute was cultivated on 4,398 hectares of land here which was 3,972 ha last year. Jute has been mostly cultivated in Sirajdikhan upazila.
Jute has been cultivated on 2,270 ha of lands in Sirajdikhan, 790 ha in Tongibari, 567 ha in Sadar, 330 ha in Louhajang, 200 ha in Gazaria, 140 ha in Sreenagar upazila this year.
Of those, local variety of jute has been cultivated on 1,844 ha of lands and Tosha variety on 2,454 ha of lands. Of those, jute of 1,400 ha of lands has been harvested.
Deputy Director of Munshiganj DAE Md Humayun Kabir said, this year there was abundant production of jute. Jute of good quality is being sold at Tk 1,500 per maund, he added.