Tender plants of maize are growing superbly now predicting bumper production of the cereal crop in Rangpur agriculture region where farmers continuing sowing its seeds during this Rabi season.
After getting repeated bumper output with lucrative price of maize following its growing demand in local markets, farmers are expanding cultivation of the lees irrigation water consuming and profitable cash crop every year.
Officials of the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) said maize cultivation has become popular among farmers improving their livelihoods and contributing to cutting poverty assisting them in achieving economic self-reliance in last one decade.
The rapidly growing demands of maize in the flourishing poultry, diary and animal husbandry sectors and food industries is inspiring famers in expanding its cultivation as a cash crop to reap more profits.
The DAE has fixed a target of producing over 10.12-lakh tonnes of maize from 99,636 hectares of land in all five districts of Rangpur, Gaibandha, Kurigram, Nilphamari and Lalmonirhat districts in Rangpur agriculture region this season.
“The farmers have already brought 88,895 hectares of land under its cultivation and they will continue sowing of its seeds till the next month,” Deputy Director of the DAE at its regional office here Agriculturist Md Moniruzzaman said.
The DAE had fixed a target of producing 7.58-lakh tonnes of maize from 83,192 hectares of land last season when farmers cultivated the crop on 92,445 hectares of land exceeding the fixed farming target by 9,253 hectares of land in the region.
“The farmers achieved an all-time record production of 9.23-lakh tonnes of maize last season in the region,” Moniruzzaman said, hoping that farmers are expected to exceed the fixed farming of maize this season too to achieve another record output.
Senior Coordinator (Agriculture and Environment) of RDRS Bangladesh Agriculturist Mamunur Rashid foresighted more potentialities to further increase maize yield by bringing the vast tracts of abandoned char lands in the riverine areas.
He said cultivation of maize is expanding fast both on the main land and riverine char areas improving living standard of small and marginal farmers, landless char and riverside people.
“Along with the government’s incentives, many NGOs distributed high yielding varieties of maize seeds and inputs among landless, small and marginal farmers, especially in char areas, for further enhancing maize cultivation this season,” he said.
Farmers Monirul Haque, Jamal Uddin of Mominpur union in Rangpur said they have already completed sowing of maize seeds and the tender plants are growing excellent now though many other farmers are still sowing maize seeds on crop lands.
Additional Director of the DAE for Rangpur region Agriculturist Muhammad Ali called for expanding low-irrigation water consuming maize cultivation to gradually reduce farming of high irrigation water consuming Boro rice to save underground water, reports BSS.
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