May 20, 2022, 12:19 am
Nazrul Islam, Joypurhat: The good days of jute, the golden fibre of Bangladesh has started to come. Jute farmers are very happy to get the unexpected price of jute. At one time, the farmer suffered losses due to lack of jute price. They turned away from cultivating jute. They have again turned to jute cultivation as they got good prices last season. It’s matter about profit. The price of jute skyrocketed at once late last year. Of course, that price did not go to the farmer’s pocket.
Farmers here in Joypurhat say that two years ago, they would not have benefited from cultivating jute. the profit from jute cultivation would not have been far from the production. They have benefited greatly from the upward price of jute last year.
Last season, early in the market, the sale of Tosha varieties (local name Kochan) started at a price of Tk. 2,200 to Tk. 2,600 (40 kg) depending on the price of jute. Jute was sold at Tk 6,000 per mond at the end of the season. But that price did not go to the jute farmer’s pocket. After traders bought jute from farmers and kept them in warehouses, the middlemen involved with the big jute businessmen benefited from the sudden rise of prices.
This season, new jute has started being purchased in the market. Last Tuesday, jute as per varieties were sold at Tk 2,600 to Tk 2,800 per mond in Jamalgyan Charmatha Bazzar in Akkelpur upazila. Raihan Hossain, a farmer from Mohabbatpur village in Khetlal upazila of the district, said the new jute has just started selling in the market. He sold jute at Tk 2,700. Earlier, there was no profit without loss by cultivating jute. Now to some extent they are seeing profits.
Jute farmers say rotting of jute trees in water after cutting jute from land is a big problem. Earlier there were small and big ponds dipped in the field or near the house. But now fish farming is profitable, pond owners are cultivating fish in those ponds or puddles. As a result, they have a big problem with waking up the jute.
When asked about the problem of jute rot or removal of jute fibre, M Meftahul Bari, Deputy Director, Joypurhat District Agriculture Extension Department, told that now there is a problem of rotting or awakening jute farmers. Several years ago, the agriculture department started a programme to rot jute in the ribbon method. But during those days, the jute farmers did not get the expected price of jute. As a result, the ribbon system was not adopted by the farmers. He said that since jute is now a profitable crop, they will sensitize jute farmers to rot jute in a ribbon manner from the agriculture department.
Shah Alam, a farmer from Pali village in sadar upazila, Joypurhat, says that reluctance comes to the farmer’s mind in jute cultivation due to the losses of cultivating jute. But now that the prices of jute are good, the interest of the farmers in jute cultivation has increased. Jute farmers are also getting good prices for jute straw side by side fuel.
According to Joypurhat district agriculture extension department, jute was cultivated in the district last year on 2,985 hectares of land. Jute is produced from that amount of land at 37,193 bales. (As 4.5 monds per bell). This time jute has been cultivated in the district on 3,115 hectares of land. That is, 130 hectares more than last year. The target for production of 38,937 bales of jute from this amount of land has been fixed.
Zahurul Islam, assistant agriculture officer of district agriculture extension department said farmers have turned to jute cultivation as prices are very good. The farmer’s good days have come by cultivating jute.
Dilip Sen, a prominent jute trader of Joypurhat town said farmers had made good profits in the last jute season by getting good jute prices. This time too they feel they will get a good price. Jute is no longer a loss-making crop of farmers. The trader feels that the jute market will be in favour of farmers as it was last year.