Jackfruit now popular fodder for cattle in Jhenaidah

Published : 16 Jun 2022 08:22 PM

Jackfruit, the national fruit of the country is not only considered as a tasty and nutritious juicy fruit to the people of Jhenaidah and surrounding districts. Rather, the green fruits are considered as fodder for the cattle heads, leafs of the plants for fodder for the goats and some other cattle heads, the seeds as widely used vegetables to the housewives in both rural and urban women and the timber is so much valuable to everybody for its timber value.

Farmers said the national fruit is losing its potential when the government initiatives for manufacturing diversified food items from its seeds as said earlier.

Mafizul Islam, a farmer of village Langalbandh Bazer in the border belt of Shailkupa upazila in Jhenaidah and Sripur upazila of Magura said he was hopeless when the buyers were officering Taka 30 to 35 for each piece of medium size fruits. It was at least 45 to 50 last year when the prices of other fruits were least. He said the farmers have been buying one kilogram of fodder selling eight to ten kilogram weight jackfruit.

Farmer Safiuddin of Khalishpur in bordering Moheshpur when contacted said most of the farmers have been feeding the green jackfruits to their cattleheads as the prices of the fodders were atleast four to five times higher than a piece of jackfruit. Safiuddin said the farmers or the orchard owners patronize the plants as the green leafs are rampantly used as the fodder for the goats and rams round the year. 

Further, the timber is famous for its best timber value throughout the country for centuries. Not for the fruits, the farmers take care of the plants for other benefits from plants.

Jackfruit vendor Amin Uddin belongs to Shariatpur when contacted at Shailkupa weekly market said he has been buying a piece of medium size fruit at Taka 55 to 60, while the large size at Taka 100 to 110 which was at least 25 more in past years. When the prices of all commodities were increasing naturally, the price of jackfruit was decreasing every year. The fruit vendor said least demand of the fruit was mainly liable for least price.

Office sources of the deputy director of the department of agriculture extension (DAE) in Jhenaidah Khamarbari, the farmers of Jhenaidah Sadar, Kaliganj, Kotchandpur, Moheshpur and Shailkupa produced 14,668 tones of jackfruit on a total of 666 hectares of land in the previous season.  No jackfruit was reportedly produced in Harinakundu upazila during the season, sources said. The exact figure could not be measured yet. But they are assuming the production will exceed the previous achievement in the current season. 

DAE deputy director in Jhenaidah Asgar Ali when contacted said the government was thinking to export the jackseed based bread, biscuits, cake and other food items as the seeds have potentials. 

It will help increase the prices of the national fruit and benefit the farmers within a few years. It will also bring forex for the country, DAE deputy director said.