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Dhaka Tribune

Gazipur farmers eye bumper mustard yield

  • 7 maunds of rapeseed could be produced this season
  • Winter crop of cultivated on 289 hectares land
Update : 17 Jan 2024, 10:27 AM

Farmers in some areas of Gazipur are expecting a bumper mustard production this season as the oilseed fields are now in full bloom, thanks to the weather suitable for the winter crop.

Officials of the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) and farmers said up to seven maunds of rapeseed could be produced this season.

In Sreepur upazila, mustard is cultivated in the municipality and eight union parishads, where farmers are passing a busy time taking care of the mustard fields.   

Officials at the upazila unit of the DAE, too, are optimistic that the mustard cultivators will make a better profit this year.

The winter crop of different varieties is cultivated on 289 hectares of land this season, they said. 

High-yielding rapeseed varieties -- BARI Sharisha-15, Tari-7 and Bina-9 -- are mainly grown there. 

Fazlul Haq, a farmer in the upazila’s Baldighat village, said he turned to mustard production because of the volatile edible oil prices.  

“Oil prices still remain high and so does demand,” he said, adding that he cultivated mustard on 11 decimals of land.

Ramij Uddin, a farmer in Kaoraid union parisad’s Bidhai village, said he has already spent Tk18,000 for the mustard crops cultivated on seven bighas of land.  

“If the weather remains favourable (for the crop), I’m expecting to produce 20 maunds of rapeseed,” he said. 

Talking to farmers revealed that less rain throughout the winter so far in the district has led to the potential bumper yield.

A farmer has to spend up to Tk3,000 on each bigha of land while each maund of mustard is priced as much as Tk3,000. A maximum of seven maunds of rapeseed can be grown on each bigha. 

It means a mustard grower can make an average profit of Tk15-16,000 from a bigha of land. Additionally, compared to other winter crops, the production cost of mustard is quite low as it does need irrigation.  

Moreover, the rapeseed fields hardly saw insect attacks this winter. 

Sumaiya Sultana Bonya, Sreepur upazila DAE official, said local farmers showed less interest in growing mustard in the beginning. 

“But after they came to know that rapeseed production is much more profitable, they in large numbers started to grow the crop in the municipality and eight union parishads,” she said.  

Bonya went on to say that the DAE would continue supporting the farmers not only in the cultivation of mustard, but other crops as well.  

Some other districts, mostly in the northern region, including Rajshahi, Magura, Panchagarh and Khulna, are also expecting similar yields of mustard.  

The Agriculture Ministry is implementing a three-year action plan to produce 40% of the local demand for edible oil, in a bid to cut dependence on the liquid item.

According to the plan, one million tons of oil will be produced locally in the next fiscal year 2024-25 without reducing the production of rice, which is 40% of the local demand. As a result, it will be possible to save about Tk10,000 crore on oil imports.

Demand for edible oil in the country is about 2,400,000 tons annually. 

Of this, only 300,000 tons are produced locally from mustard, sesame and sunflower, which is 12% of demand. The rest of the edible oil has to be imported. 

The cultivation of crops, including mustard, sesame, almonds, soybean and sunflowers will be increased by three times from the present 860,000 hectares to 2,360,000 hectares in the fiscal 2024-25. 

Various incentives are being given to the farmers through the oilseed crop production enhancement project to achieve the target. As a result, mustard cultivation has increased on about 200,000 hectares of land in 2022. 

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