Nut cultivation raises hopes in Tangail char areas

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They are reaping quick profits since it requires minimal investment and quick returns on money

Farmers on the banks of the rivers Jamuna and Dhaleshwari in Tangail in the char areas are busy cultivating nuts on its riversides.

They are reaping quick profits since it requires minimal investment and quick returns on money. 

Most farmlands are cultivating Dhaka-1 and DG-1 variety of nuts, which locals say are cultivated on the riverbanks, dried, and then transported to various parts of the country to be sold commercially.

Per maund of nuts sells for Tk2,000 to Tk2,200. The cost of cultivating nuts on per bigha of land is Tk4,000-5,000, while each bigha yields 10-12 maunds of nuts. As a result, farmers profit Tk15,000-20,000 on per bigha after expenses.

Nut seedlings are planted every year from October to the first week of November, and are then extracted between January and April.

The soil on which they are planted are first slightly processed to make the earth lighter, while the weeds are removed.

The nut seedlings are then planted. Luckily the earth is fertile in the region, which is why applying additional fertilizers or pesticides is not necessary.

The fact that farmers can extract nuts merely three months after planting them is inspiring countless others to take it up as a profession.

Md Rafik, a nut farmer in Nagarpur upazila, said his profit margin is increasing every year. This year he hopes to profit Tk16,000-18,000 on per bigha after expenses.

The information of the district’s nuts has led its distribution to expand to most of the districts in the country. 

But farmers complained of lack of a government procurement centre for nuts, where they could sell their goods directly to visiting wholesalers. Many alleged they were not receiving fair prices for their produce from intermediaries and local wholesalers.

Shamsul Islam, another nut farmer from Bhuapur upazila, said the floods earlier this year had affected his profits, which he hoped to recuperate with a bumper nut yield.

Abdur Razzak, deputy director at Tangail’s Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) office, said their office is doing everything they can to promote nut cultivation in the district, including distribution of adequate seedlings, fertilizers and other logistical support.