Beans bring fortune for Pabna farmers

http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/more.php?news_id=157791&date=2011-12-01

Beans bring fortune for Pabna farmers
Our Correspondent

PABNA, Nov 30: A large number of farmers in Pabna and Natore districts are now engaged in bean cultivation as it proved highly profitable changing the lives of many people in the region.

Some 60/70 trucks loaded with beans leave ‘Muladuli bean zone’ in Iswardi Upazila of Pabna, the biggest bean-producing area, for capital Dhaka and other parts of the country everyday as beans worth around Tk 1 crore is traded daily at the local market, traders said.

Over 1.5 lakh families are now involved in bean cultivation and its business in the region that sees increasing cultivation of it for the last several years, local sources said.

Bean farmers from Pabna and Natore districts take their products to Muladuli market and sell it to wholesalers who supply it to different places including Dhaka, Chittagong, Sylhet and Narayanganj.

Farmers from all the villages of Muladuli union under Ishwardi upazila, Khidirpur, Per Khidirpur and Ramchandrapur unions of Atghoria upazila and Zednail, Haripur and adjoining villages of Chatmohar upazila under Pabna district bring their product to the market for sale, said Abdur Razzak, secretary of Muladuli Vegetable Traders Association.

The farmers from Boraigram, Gopalpur and Lalpur upazilas in Natore also bring their beans to the country’s largest wholesale bean market, traders said.

“The local market sees trading of 1,800 to 2,100 maunds of bean everyday. The amount is on rise as there has been a bumper production of the vegetable this year,” said Mohammad Sohel, a wholesaler of the market.

“Each maund (37.32 kg) of bean now sells between Tk 400 and Tk 450 while the same amount sold between Tk 3,500 and Tk 3,600 a few weeks ago. The price will decrease further as the supply is on rise,” said Abdur Razzak.

Sources in Pabna Agriculture Extension Department said at least 3,000 hectares of land have been brought under bean cultivation in the district this year while it was around 2,200 hectares last year.

This year beans were produced on over 6,000 hectares of land.

“I have cultivated beans on six bighas of land this year while it was only one bigha a few years ago. After obtaining my master’s degree, I joined a school. At the same time I started bean cultivation as it is very profitable,” said Mukter Hossain.

“Bean farming on a bigha of land costs Tk 12,000 to 14,000. If there is no natural calamity, a farmer can get 80 to 100 maunds of bean from the land in a season. One can easily earn a profit of Tk 15,000 to 20,000 per bigha,” said Latif Joarder, a small bean farmer.

A few bean farmers, however, said they often fail to get fair price of the product.

Local farmers and traders have demanded that the government build a cold storage in the area so that they can preserve their agricultural products.

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