Farmers eyeing bumper onion output in Rangpur region

Published : 20 Jan 2022 09:50 PM | Updated : 20 Jan 2022 09:50 PM

Farmers are expecting a bumper onion output in Rangpur agriculture region during this Rabi season as harvest of its tuber variety continues with excellent yield rate.

  Officials of the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) said farmers are currently harvesting the tuber variety of onion to reap better profits as transplantation of onion seedlings continues and will end by February next.

  Considering growing demand and frequent scarcity of onion, the DAE has fixed a record production target of 1,18,796 tonnes of the spice crop from 9,915 hectares of land for all five districts in the region this season.

  "Farmers have so far cultivated onion on 7,893 hectares of land, 79.61 percent against the fixed farming target for the region till Thursday," Additional Director of the DAE for Rangpur region Agriculturist Md. Mahbubur Rahman told.

  The DAE, Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation, Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute and Bangladesh Institute of Nuclear Agriculture have taken ample steps to assist farmers in making the onion farming program successful.

  Meanwhile, farmers have already harvested the tuber variety of onion on 1,239 hectares of land producing 13,495 tonnes of onion with an excellent yield rate of 10.89 tonnes per hectare on an average.

  "Getting lucrative prices of onion, farmers are cultivating onion on more land," Rahman said, adding that the government has provided free onion seeds and assistance to small and marginal farmers to further increase onion production.

  During the last Rabi season, farmers produced a record quantity of 1,06,205 tonnes of onion in the region exceeding the fixed production target of 95,207 tonnes from 9,750 hectares of land by 10,998 tonnes of the spice crop.  "Production of onion continues increasing every year in the last 13 years following different pragmatic steps taken by the government to meet its local demand and attain self-reliance," Rahman said.

  Earlier, farmers produced 89,970 tonnes of onion during 2019-2020 Rabi season, 66,886 tonnes during the 2018-2019 season and 62,673 tonnes during 2017-2018 season in the region.

Farmers Mohsin Ali, Azizul Islam and Abdul Hye of different villages in Rangpur Sadar said they are now harvesting the tuber variety of onion and preparing their lands for transplantation of onion seedlings.

  Vegetable trader Hafizur Rahman at Rangpur City Bazar said that the market price of onion has come down to Taka 30 to Taka 35 per kg after the appearance of plenty of the newly harvested tuber variety of onions in local markets.

  Senior Coordinator (Agriculture and Environment) of RDRS Bangladesh Agriculturist Mamunur Rashid said onion cultivation and production could increase by ensuring suitable crop diversification and utilization of latest technologies in the northern region.

  The DAE, Spices Research Institutes and other agriculture related research institutions and organizations are working to increase onion production for meeting local demand and reduce dependence on its import.

  "Farmers are enhancing onion cultivation every year getting necessary assistance from the government to increase its output and attain self- reliance of the spice commodity," Rashid added.