Winter vegetables appearing in Rangpur markets

Farmers unable to reap benefit due to lack of storage system

Published : 21 Nov 2021 09:54 PM

Currently the late of autumn is going on and winter will arrive soon. However, in the meantime, various winter vegetables have started to appear in the markets of Rangpur. 

The vegetables produced in Rangpur are being transported by truck every day to the wholesale markets of different areas including Dhaka's Karwan Bazar, the main kitchen market warehouse of the country. The farmers of Gangachara and Mithapukur supply most of the advance vegetables in Rangpur city and surrounding areas. 

Due to the relatively high arable land, all kinds of vegetables are produced here. Even in adverse weather, the farmers here are becoming self-sufficient by producing vegetables in advance.

However, due to lack of storage system and local market system, farmers are often deprived of proper profit. Gangachara’s Chengmari, Pashchim Mandrain and Nilakchandi, these three villages belong to Gangachara Sadar Union. As the soil of these villages is mostly Belemati, nothing but Kash (a kind of straw) used to grow in the land of these villages. 

The local farmers gradually abandoned the hope of cultivating paddy and gradually made the lands of these relatively high areas suitable for vegetable cultivation.

But now, they have been inclined to cultivate vegetables in advance for the last few years as they do not get a fair price by planting in the traditional way.

Visiting the fields of Mominpur, Baldipukur, Baripara, Tajnagar, Konapara, Aviram Nurpur, Chuhar, Islampur and Batasan Durgapur villages of Mithapur it was seen that they were filled with various types of winter vegetables including radish, brinjal, cauliflower, cabbage, gourd and beans. Farmers are busy in cultivating vegetable in the fields. Field work is going on from morning till evening. They don't even have time to catch their breath. Someone is irrigating the coffee field. Someone is spraying in the vegetable field. Wholesalers from different areas including the city are buying these vegetables from the fields.

Kona Mohant, a farmer from Baripara area of Baldipukur union, has cultivated cauliflower and cabbage in two bighas of land this time. The cost of land including seeds, fertilizers and pesticides has been Tk 15 thousand per bigha. He said he hoped to sell each piece of cauliflower for Tk 15 to 20. But in the market wholesalers are buying cauliflowers at the price of Tk 200. The price of each cauliflower weighing about two kg is only Tk 10. 

Shahadat Hossain, a farmer of the same area, said, “I sold radishes of one Bigha of land only for Tk 500 that were cultivated a cost of Tk 5,000. Still none wanted to 

buy them.”

Farmers of Changmari village in Gangachara, Yogen Member, Mohin Chandra, Mansur Ali, Manoranjan, Mohani and Dhaneshwar are known as early vegetable growers in the area. They cultivate vegetables throughout the year. The gourds, squash and eggplants produced by them are now famous. These vegetables are going to Dhaka including local hat-bazaar and Rangpur city. They are changing their destiny by cultivating vegetables. So they are more interested in vegetable cultivation instead of paddy cultivation.

The vegetable growers said that after harvesting the vegetables in advance, winter vegetables can be cultivated in the second phase in that land. However, at that time, that is, in the full season, they did not get a price, they said. 

Gangachara Upazila Agriculture Officer Shariful Islam said the areas in Gangachara are suitable for vegetable cultivation as the soil is mostly ‘Do-ash’. Farmers in these areas are very aware. So they are changing their condition by cultivating vegetables in advance.

According to the office of the Deputy Director of the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE), Rangpur, vegetables have been cultivated in more than 10,000 hectares of land in eight upazilas of the district, Rangpur Sadar, Kaunia, Gangachara, Mithapukur, Pirganj, Pirgachha, Badarganj and Taraganj this year.