Category Archives: Dairy, Meat, Cattle, Fish and Poultry Industry

Nitol-Niloy to set up joint venture poultry complex

Nitol-Niloy to set up joint venture poultry complex

Abdul Musabbir Ahmed, managing director of Nitol-Niloy, and Harish Bagla, managing director of India’s Amrit Group of Companies, exchanging documents after signing an agreement at a city hotel yesterday. Chairman of Nitol-Niloy Group Abdul Matlub Ahmad (left-front), and vice chairman Selima Matlub Ahmad are also seen.

Staff Correspondent

Nitol-Niloy Group will set up a poultry industry complex in the country, jointly with India’s Amrit Group of Companies, in a major move to meet the increasing demand for poultry and hatcheries.

The joint venture deal for investing around US$ 10 million was signed between the two companies at a local hotel yesterday.

Managing directors of the both sides—Abdul Musabbir Ahmed of Nitol-Niloy, and his Indian counterpart Harish Bagla inked the agreement.

Chairman of Nitol-Niloy Group Abdul Matlub Ahmad, and vice chairman Selima Matlub Ahmad were also present at the signing ceremony.

The investment plan includes feed manufacturing, breeding farm, hatchery, commercial farming and chicken processing, though it is being started with the installation of a modern feed plant in the northern part of the country. The full investment plan is likely to take two to three years.

The high-ups of the two companies said the investment will generate good nutrition at an affordable price to the common people in a hygienic way. It would also give a breakthrough to the local poultry industry, they hoped.

Amrit Group, one of the largest players in the animal feed industry, annually produces 7,00,000 tonnes of poultry, cattle and fish feed.

It will be a new move for Nitol-Niloy as they are already engaged in automobile, cement, paper, insurance and finance sectors.

Japan to support rural fishery

Japan to support rural fishery

DHAKA, March 21 (BSS)- A Japanese organization has set up a training center at Savar in Dhaka to impart training to rural farmers to promote agriculture, fishery, forestry and industrial development, especially in rural areas.

The Embassy of Japan and OISCA-IDB, the Japanese organization, today signed a contract for this development project for rural fishery in Bangladesh through Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects (GGHSP) at the embassy here.

Ambassador of Japan to Bangladesh Tamotsu Shinotsuka and a representative of OISCA-IDB signed the contract, said a press release of the Embassy of Japan.

With a grant of US$ 97,122, the organization will excavate ponds and construct fish hatchery.

A total of 200 rural fishermen will be able to receive training in fishery and more than 500 fisheries will be expected to purchase fry of good quality every year through the project.

The government of Japan hopes that the assistance will help to improve the situation in the rural area in Bangladesh, the release said.

Milk Vita to set up dairy industry at West Patiya

Milk Vita to set up dairy industry at West Patiya
Our Correspondent

CHITTAGONG, March 19: State owned Milk Vita is likely to set up a full fledged milk processing industry in Chittagong. Milk Vita officials visited the major dairy farms and milk producing areas on the south bank of the Karnafuli river yesterday.

The Milk Vita team comprising general manager Nasim Ahmed and manager (planning and development) Mustafizur Rahman visited a number of dairy farms and talked to the farm owners at West Patiya and Karnafuli area on Thursday.

They said the locality is currently producing 35,000 litres of milk a day. The quantity is sufficient to feed the industry for pasteurization of milk.

Milk Vita GM Nasim Ahmed said the dairy farmers of the locality recently met with the LGRD and Cooperatives state minister Jahangir Kabir Nanak and demanded setting up of a milk processing industry.

The farmers said that related expenditures including cow-feed and cow nursing have increased while their breeding capacity is reducing due to lack of adequate food.

During the meeting with the state minister on March 2 last the West Patiya Dairy Farm Owners Association leader Nazim Uddin Haider demanded government patronization to the dairy farm industry through providing subsidy on the cow-feed, Milk Vita GM said.

Following the meeting the state minister instructed concerned officials to make a field survey on the feasibility and primary site selection for the proposed industry.

Dairy farmers said there are some 550 dairy farms with more than 9000 cows in 10 unions of West Patiya and Karnafuli, which are supplying 35,000 litres of milk every day. Several hundred rural youths are employed in the farms, they said.

Milk Vita manager Mustafizur Rahman said another high level team of officials will be visiting the area very shortly which will make the final selection of industry site and report to the concerned authority. It will be established at the Milk Vita’s own funding, he added.

Milk Vita GM Nasim Ahmed said machineries for the industry are likely to be imported from India instead of Canada or Denmark to ensure quick implementation of the project. “It will be a Baghabari-like industry of Milk Vita in Chittagong around which new farms will grow up in the area centering the industry.”

PM opens shrimp research centre at Bagerhat today

PM opens shrimp research centre at Bagerhat today

KHULNA: The newly-built Bagerhat Shrimp Research Centre will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today (Tuesday). — FE photo

Our Correspondent

KHULNA, Mar 14: The only shrimp research centre of the country at Bagerhat constructed at a cost of Tk 230 million is going to be inaugurated by the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today (Tuesday) noon, official sources said.

The Prime Minister will lay the foundation stone of Bagerhat Bar Council building. She will also attend a special Munajat at Bagerhat Khanjahan Ali (Rm.) Major and later at 3 pm she will deliver address a public meeting as chief guest at Khanjahan Ali collage maiden, arranged by Bagerhat district Awami League and its front organisations.

All arrangements have been completed by the district and police administration to hold the programme successfully. Source said that after inauguration of the said research centre the shrimp cultivators of south western region will be highly benefited in this sector. The shrimp farmers expressed satisfaction over the inauguration of this researches centre.

Country’s second highest foreign currency earniner, a total of 80-90 per cent

frozen foods and fisheries are produced in Khulna, Bagerhat, Satkhira and Jessore districts.

In 2005 the then Prime Minister has taken an initiative to remove the problems of the shrimp sector from this area. For this 8 acres of land at a cost of Tk 2.9 million near Daratana bridge of Bhairab river of Bagerhat and a project was undertaken to set up a shrimp research centre at a cost of Tk 226.8 million in 2005-2006 financial year.

Under this project an office building, an auditorium, seminar room, a training centre with one hundred seats, 4 laboratories, 9 research ponds, one hatchery and a staff dormitory and a manpower of 28 are functioning in the project initially. Meanwhile, about 4500 shrimp farmers have been provided training through this project.

Rangpur Dairy proving a resounding success

Rangpur Dairy proving a resounding success

Fresh Milk from RD Milk. Source:

Our Correspondent

RANGPUR, Jan 10: The Rangpur Dairy (RD) Milk processing factory at Boldipukur in Mithapukur Upazila of the district has provided solvency to hundreds of monga-hit poor people in Rangpur.

These poor people are now rearing cows at home and selling milk to factory, first ever small private industry set up in the district after the commissioning of Jamuna Bridge.

Rangpur Dairy Milk undertook a laudable step earlier, to support the poor providing cows on easy terms to produce milk at home so that they might be benefited financially.

RD Milk Manager Ashraful Alam said, “We provided 425 cows among 375 families of Salaipur and Muradpur under Mithapukur Upazila.

He said, “The Company not only aims to do business but also wants to create a financially sound community in the process.”

He said, “RD Milk has not donated the cows to the beneficiaries free of cost. They have to pay the purchase rate of the cows in exchange of supplying milk to the factory for a certain period. When the prices of the cows are completely realised, the authority would transfer ownership of the animals to them.” he said.

Motin Miah at Muradpur in Mithapukur Upazila who received two cows from RD Milk said that he paid the price of the cow to the company. He is now milking 30 litres out of which earning Tk 750 a day.

RD Milk Managing Director Foqruzzaman said, the poor people of Rangpur as well as dairy farmers in the district are getting benefit from RD. He said the dairy farmers in Rangpur who were in utter frustration and were about to close their farms due to frequent losses even two years back are now getting profit by selling milk to RD Milk.

RD Milk has now been producing full cream milk through Ultra High Temperature (UHT) method. Only three companies in the country were producing full cream milk through UHT method. The companies include Pran, Akiz and RD milk.

“We are now supplying the milk products to Dhaka and other parts of the country including the northern districts. At present, about 15000 litres of milk are being processed a day in the industry”.

Foqruzzaman told The Financial Express, “We have a plan to turn RD Milk as one of the biggest milk processing industry of the country so that about 30,000 dairy farmers of Rangpur and its adjoining districts may get benefit.”

He said the authority has completed preparation to produce RD Butter, RD Tea, and RD Sweets. He however expressed his dissatisfaction at the absence of gas supply through pipeline and adequate electricity in Rangpur.

The production cost will be reduced at least 50 percent if there is uninterrupted gas supply. Power shortage also often hampers production resulting in loss to the company, he added.

Regarding prospect of RD Milk, FBCCI Vice-president and former President of Rangpur Chamber of Commerce and Industry Mostafa Azad Choudhury said it is the first ever industry of its kind set up in Rangpur with the Equity Entrepreneur Fund (EEF) of Bangladesh Bank. He expressed optimism that RD Milk might help a lot in bringing socio-economic change in Rangpur.

RDRS to produce 700 tonnes of additional fish worth Tk. 12 crore in the paddy fields

RDRS to produce 700 tonnes of additional fish worth Tk. 12 crore in the paddy fields

RANGPUR, Dec 5 (BSS) – Rangpur-Dinajpur Rural Service (RDRS) is expected to produce 700 tonnes of additional fish in the paddy fields worth Taka 12 crore involving the marginal farmers of the northern region this season.

Harvesting of the fish cultivated under the DFID-funded ongoing 3-year project of ‘Enhancing Impacts of decentralized (fish) Seed Production (EIDSP)’ will be complete by this month, Project Manager Mokhlesur Rahman of EIDSP told BSS today.

The small and marginal farmers have cultivated 3.5 crore GIFT Tilapia fingerlings in the paddy fields to produce huge quantity of additional fish this season in the country’s 10 northern districts to improve their livelihoods.

Bumper fish harvest is now nearing completion which is expected bringing huge profits to the farmers of Kurigram, Lalmonirhat, Nilphamari, Gaibandha, Dinajpur, Thakurgaon, Panchagarh, Rajshahi, Chapainawabganj and Naogaon districts.

RDRS with 11 partner organisations distributed broods to produce fingerlings in the paddy fields this year to help the poor earning profits, tackling poverty and meeting their nutrition demand by GIFT Tilapia farming and selling fingerlings.

The 3-year project is being implemented and will be complete by June 2011 in Bangladesh, India and Nepal, RDRS experts said.

On completion of the project, 21,000 targeted small and marginal farmers of these districts will produce six crore GIFT Tilapia fingerlings and 6,000 tonnes additional Tilapia fish worth Taka 75 crore annually, they said.

This season, 8,827 farmers were involved in successfully breeding Tilapia broods in their paddy fields in the last Boro season and the process will be complete with the end of T-Aman harvests by this.

More than 2.3 lakh GIFT Tilapia broods fish were reared in cages at the community levels and those were distributed to the enrolled farmers for breeding in 790 hectares of paddy fields.

The selected farmers dug small ditches in Boro fields and released the Tilapia broods from late March to mid-April, and breeding continued till April- May last when the farmers started selling their fingerlings.

The farmers became more interested in culturing fish and requested for more Tilapia broods this time, Head of Agriculture of RDRS Dr MG Neogi said.

The proven environment friendly technology for making available the quality fingerlings to the door step of the farmers has been helping them to alleviate poverty and getting nutrition by paddy field fish cultivation, he added

University of Maryland to help produce quality shrimp

University of Maryland to help produce quality shrimp
Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha . Dhaka

University of Maryland and Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation has signed an agreement of cooperation for development of production and import of quality shrimps.

The agreement was signed between University of Maryland President CD Mote Jr and Syed Mahmudul Huq of Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation on behalf of their respective sides during the visit of a Bangladesh delegation recently in the USA.

The agreement was acknowledged by Dr Cheng-I Wei, Dean, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources of the University.

On his return from the USA Syed Mahmud told the news agency that it was a tripartite cooperation agreement between the government, private entrepreneurs and the academics to enhance both the quality and the quantity of country’s shrimp productions.

Mahmud said three aspects like food safety, environmental sustainability and social responsibility which were the pressing demands from the shrimp importers would be mitigated under this cooperation deal.

He said as shrimp was a very labour intensive product, Bangladesh was the best country in the world to supply shrimp to the buyers. ‘If we can maintain its food quality, no other country could compete with us in this vitally important export trades,’ he added.

Mamud said the present agreement would provide for, among others, joint research and training activities, exchange of scholars and experts for seminars, conferences and research activities.

Under the agreement, Joint Institute for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, a joint initiative of US Food and Drug Administration and University of Maryland and Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation have already initiated a Training of Trainers Programme for eventual implementation of ‘Good Aquaculture Practices’ throughout Bangladesh to ensure food safety, environmental sustainability and social responsibility both in terms of human and labour rights.

Besides, both JIFSAN and BSFF have reached an understanding to set up a JIFSAN-BSFF Aquaculture and Aquatic Food Safety Centre as an affiliate of Fishery Products Business Promotion Council under Public Private Partnership.

This would work as a network of training institutes in the region with a goal to build capacity of both foreign regulators and manufacturers in the use of international best practices in food safety management to better assure the safety of the food supply chain in the region.

In Bangladesh, fisheries constitute the second most important source of foreign exchange where shrimp alone earned $445.41 million in 2007-2008. It made 3.15 per cent contribution to national export and over 45 per cent contribution to total export from all agro-based primary commodities.

By 2015, the shrimp and prawn will be expected to make up 1,64,000 tonnes as against the estimated current production of 90,000 tonnes. The fisheries road map projects export earning of $1.1 billion from the shrimp and prawn and $0.1 billion from the fish by 2015.

At the present moment the USA is the single largest importer of shrimp from Bangladesh while all other EU countries are the major buyers of the aqua-products.

Rural fish farm plan announced

Rural fish farm plan announced

Mar 22 : Rangpur-Dinajpur Rural Service (RDRS) has taken a massive plan of farming 3.5 crore GIFT Tilapia fingerlings in rice fields to produce 700 tonnes additional fish worth Taka 11 crore this season in 10 northern districts.

The programme is now being implemented after the poor and marginal farmers achieved tremendous success by producing 293 tonnes additional fish and 1.2 crore fingerlings in rice fields to improve their livelihoods in these districts last year.

The 3-year project of ‘Enhancing Impacts of Decentralized (fish) Seed Production (EIDSP)’ funded by Department of International Development (DFID) of the UK is being implemented and will be completed by June 2011 in Bangladesh, India and Nepal.

RDRS in collaboration with 11 partner organisations has been working since last year for producing quality fingerlings and GIFT Tilapia fish in rice fields to help the poor earning profits, tackling poverty and meeting their nutrition demand. This season, a total of 3.5 crore Tilapia fingerlings will be produced involving 8,827 rice field farmers and last year’s successful farmers, who are already preparing their boro-rice fields for breeding Tilapia broods during this Boro season. To make the programme successful, 2.3 lakh GIFT Tilapia broods fish have been reared in cages by the Satellite Brood Rearers at the community level and these broods will be distributed to the enrolled farmers for breeding in 790 hectares of rice fields.

The selected farmers have been developing small ditches in boro rice fields now and they will release the Tilapia broods in their rice-fields late March to April 2010, breeding will continue during April- May when the farmers will start selling their fingerlings.

Besides, the project will support to 709 seasonal pond farmers for rearing the major carp’s dhani (half-inch sized fries) and a total of 709 kg of dhani will be distributed to the seasonal pond farmers that will produce more 3.5 million fingerlings approximately.

“Because of availability of the quality fingerlings at community level, the farmers are becoming more interested in culturing fish and requesting for more Tilapia broods this time,” Project Coordinator Sattyanarayan Roy of EIDSP told the news agency yesterday. He said that more than 3.5 lakh GIFT Tilapia fingerlings worth Taka 4 crore will be produced during Boro season and 700 metric tonnes additional Tilapia fish worth Taka 7 crore in these 10 northern districts before the T-Aman harvest this year.

After completion of the project by the year 2011, a total of 21,000 targeted farmers of these districts will produce six crore GIFT Tilapia fingerlings and 6,000 tonnes additional Tilapia fish worth Taka sixty crore annually, the experts said.

Like the last year, the project will be implemented in Kurigram, Lalmonirhat, Nilphamari, Gaibandha, Dinajpur, Thakurgaon, Panchagarh, Rajshahi, Naogaon and Chapainawabganj this year in the region.

Using the proven technology of producing GIFT Tilapia fingerlings, 8,833 rural poor farmers successfully produced fingerlings on 886 hectares rice fields and 1,734 farmers cultivated carp fingerlings on 98 hectares seasonal ponds last year.

The involved families also then earned extra profits from the same rice-fields without hampering rice production and got nutrients from fish regularly and it also reduced use of pesticides and fertilizers improving soil health and environment.

Director of RDRS and Team Leader of EIDSP Dr Syed Samsuzzaman told BSS that the proven environment friendly technologies for making available quality fingerlings to the door end of farmers has been helping them to alleviate poverty and getting nutrition.

Renowned fisheries expert Dr Benoy Kumar Barman of the Worldfish Centre told that each of the involved farmer household will be able to produce 2,500 Tilapia fingerlings from their rice fields of 20 decimal areas on an average.

Last week, Vansi Reddi, Research Associate of National Resource International Ltd visited the project in Kurigram and Nilphamari, talked to the farmers and expressed satisfaction over the lowest cost project to facilitate fish farming benefiting the farmers.

During their visits to Rangpur last year, Prof. Dr David Little of University of Stirling in the UK, Dr Madhav Shrestha of Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science of Nepal and Kuddus Ansary of India saw brighter prospects of the project.

EU team inspects shrimp plants

EU team inspects shrimp plants
Quazi Amanullah, Khulna

A European Union (EU) team has shown interests in the import of frozen foods after visiting various centres in Khulna and Bagerhat.

Members of the EU Food and Veterinary Office arrived in Khulna on Monday to know about the prevailing situation of the country’s freshwater shrimp in the two districts.

The three-member team visited fish processing factories, fish landing centres, depots and fish inspection and quality control centres in the districts.

The delegation also had long discussions with the officials of the Fisheries Department and Khulna chapter of Bangladesh Frozen Food Exporters’ Association (BFFEA).

“They were satisfied with the ways of growing and processing shrimps and also matters relating to maintain its quality in hygienic condition,” said Humayun Kabir, director of BFFEA.

Freshwater shrimp export, the country’s second-biggest foreign-currency earner, resumed on January 11 after a six-month suspension on detection of health-hazardous antibiotic Nitrofuran in shrimps.

Tk 4,500 cr freshwater shrimps to EU, other destination

Tk 4,500 cr freshwater shrimps to EU, other destination
BSS, Dhaka

Clouds over Bangladesh’s freshwater shrimp industry is paring down as the European Union (EU) renewed its confidence once again in the second biggest foreign currency earner.

A high-powered EU delegation is due on January 18 to examine latest improvement in compliance issue as the six-month self- imposed ban on shrimp (galda) import to the EU comes to an end today.

On June 1, entrepreneurs voluntarily suspended the export of salt-water shrimp to the EU for six months following detection of health hazardous antibiotic- nitrofuran in shrimp, which resulted in cancellation of more than 50 consignments.

Bangladesh Frozen Foods Exporters Association (BFFEA) set a target to export freshwater shrimp (golda) worth Taka 4,500 crore this year.

“We have earmarked Taka 4,500 crore freshwater shrimp export to different destinations including EU if any problem does not arise and no more objections from the EU,” President of the BFFEA Musa Mia told BSS in an interview.

The association has already forwarded a proposal to the government suggesting for setting up at least two modern testing labs in Khulna and Chittagong on an urgent basis, he said adding that the BFFEA do not want to see suspension again for export.

About use of chemical in shrimp production, he said the government should make a shrimp policy forthwith to propel the growth of the industry. He recommended the government to give necessary directives to the deputy commissioners (DCs) of Khulna and Chittagong so that they could initiate a campaign to withdraw the antibiotic drug items from local markets.

BFFEA president said the sector had witnessed some sort of uncertainty after two consecutive disasters and global recession that brought down prices, forcing shut down some factories and ultimately dented the buyers demand for salt-water shrimp.

“We have got nothing from the government in the backdrop of the crisis and not even a single Penney from the Taka 5,000 crore stimulus package,” Musa pointed out.

Chairman of Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation (BSFF) Syed Mahmudul Haq told the national news agency that they want to have a pint point in every level of production like farmers, businessmen, processing and export.

The foundation has embarked on a plan to formulate ‘national plan’ in collaboration with industries association and the department of Fisheries (DoF) for promotion of the sector, said Haq.

Fisheries and Livestock ministry sources said Bangladesh exported freshwater shrimp (galda) worth 114 crore to different destinations excepting the EU during June to November last year while it was Taka 246 crore during corresponding period in 2008.

Besides, export of shrimp (bagda) worth Taka 1,348 crore during June- November in 2009, a Taka 173 crore more than that of the same period of previous year.

The country exported around 50,368 metric tons of shrimp (all categories) and earned Taka 2,774 crore last year and this year the ministry is expected to export 55,000 metric tons of shrimp.

Fingerling tilapia production in paddy fields found profitable

Fingerling tilapia production in paddy fields found profitable
Most cultivable land in greater Rangpur, Dinajpur suitable for tilapia farming

Farmers net fingerling genetically improved farmed tilapia from the ditch in a paddy field in Nilphamari. — New Age photo

Our Correspondent . Rangpur

Production of fingerling genetically improved farmed tilapia in paddy fields can be additional income generating activities in the country’s northern districts, according to research findings.

The Rangpur-Dinajpur Rural Service, Bangladesh with the technical support of World Fish Centre conducted the research which found fingerling GIFT production in the region highly profitable.

Farming of fingerling genetically improved farmed tilapia could play a vital role in poverty reduction in greater Rangpur and Dinajpur, says the research findings.

There is a huge potential of GIFT production in the poverty-hit region as most of the cultivable land here are suitable for paddy-fish cultivation, according to the findings.

The RDRS along with 10 other NGOs in cooperation with World Fish Centre is implementing fingerling GIFT production programme in 22 upazilas of greater Rangpur and Dinajpur and eight upazilas in Barendra region of Rajshahi.

More than 8,800 farmers of the region are now involved in production of fingerling tilapia and Karfu fish in ditches dug in the corner of paddy fields, RDRS sources said.

About 344 tonnes of tilapia fry worth about Tk 1.5 core and 70 tonnes of Ruhi fry worth about Tk 70 lakh have been produced by farming in paddy fields in the region this year, the sources added.

The BRDS director, Dr Syed Samsuzzaman, said fingerling GIFT production has already started in Nepal and India with 1,000 farmers so far engaged in it for ecological ground.

The World Fish Center coordinator, Dr Binoy Kumar Barman, told New Age that farmers would greatly benefit from fingerling GIFT farming in paddy fields.

GIFT cultivation is environment-friendly and it will reduce use of chemical fertilizer and pesticides in the land, he pointed out.

‘If the farmers produce fingeling GIFT in the paddy fields, they would get twin benefit,’ he added.

‘They (farmers) not only will get paddy but also additional earning from the same land’.

Sattyanarayan Roy, project coordinator of Decentralised Seed Production, RDRS, said they have a plan to expand GIFT cultivation in the region.

‘We will distribute tilapia brood among 10,500 farmers in the region next year,’ he added.

Bidhu Kushan Ray, a farmer of village Gurguri Hindupara under Kundupukur union in Nilphamari said, ‘I produced tilapia fry in a ditch on one decimal out of my 14 decimals of paddy field with the help of the RDRS.

The RDRS gave me 10 mother fish for producing fingerling GIFT in the ditch. I sold 15 kg spawn at Tk 1,500 and consumed at least 10 kgs of tilapia fish. There are still about 20kg in the ditch.

Abul Kahsem, a farmer of village Icchamat in Gharialdhanga union under Rajarhat upazilla in Kurigram said he had received 10 mother fish from RDRS and cultivated in one corner of his one bigha paddy field.

Local milk powder churns high

Local milk powder churns high

A salesman stacks packets of locally produced milk powder at a retail outlet of Agora in Dhaka yesterday. Pran is the latest player to enter the milk powder market. Photo: Amran Hossain

Sohel Parvez

The dairy industry is set for a boom as another processor Pran moves to produce milk powder with a promise to purchase fresh milk from farmers round the year without curtailing procurement even during peak production season.

Pran will be the third in making powdered milk from locally produced liquid milk after Bangladesh Milk Producers’ Cooperatives Union Ltd (BMPCUL) and Brac.

Operators said the entry of Pran would enhance the overall powdered milk producing capacity of the three processors from about 21,000 tonnes a year to about 26,000 tonnes. The targeted quantity will be at least three-fourth of the total annual imports of powdered milk that costs around Tk 700 crore.

Pran now processes liquid milk and has already set up a powdered milk producing plant with an annual production capacity of around 4,800 tonnes. The total cost of the project is estimated at nearly Tk 20 crore, said Kamruzzaman Kamal, director in charge of marketing of Pran-RFL Group.

Industry stakeholders said Pran’s new venture would be helpful for dairy farmers as they will not be forced to sell their produce at lower price due to excess supply of milk during the peak production season — mainly from January to June.

The new plant will help Pran buy more fresh milk from the farmers during the peak season to produce powdered milk.

“We also want to ensure uninterrupted purchase of milk all the time from the farmers without capping supply during peak season,” Kamal said.

Insiders said such purchase will also help Pran process liquid milk in a big quantity during lean season when production slumps by nearly 30 percent.

But availability of fresh milk throughout the year at a price encouraging enough for processors to compete with imported milk powder remains as a concern, the insiders said.

Despite a steady rise in production in the recent years, price of fresh milk remains high because of a low yield and high feed cost.

The situation hurts the competitive edge of the processors who need to spend more than Tk 300 to make a kilogramme of milk powder now.

But the current price of imported milk powder is Tk 225-Tk 240 a kg, Kamal said.

“It will be difficult to compete with imported powdered milk,” he said.

Mohammad Ali, general manager of Brac Dairy and Food Project, said the amount of powdered milk import is only about 15 percent of the total annual production in Bangladesh.

“We can bring down the imports to zero level within the next two-three years if the government offers tariff protection,” said Ali of Brac Dairy, which processes and markets Aarong brand liquid and powdered milk.

Brac, the second biggest processor, has a capacity to produce more than 2,000 tonnes of milk powder a year. The biggest processor, BMPCUL, which markets Milk Vita brand, has a capacity of producing over 19,000 tonnes, officials said.

Brac collects around 100,000 litres of fresh milk from the farmers in 26 districts per day and now uses half of its capacity. The social business venture now sells around 30 tonnes of milk powder per month, Ali said.

“We can increase our production and expand capacity further if government policy support is available,” said Ali.

Fish farming at paddy fields gaining popularity in Kurigram

Fish farming at paddy fields gaining popularity in Kurigram
Unb, Kurigram

Fish cultivation along with paddy in paddy fields is gaining popularity as it brings financial benefit to farmers in the district.

Local sources said farmers cultivated fish on 600 acres of land along with paddy this year.

Experiencing the financial benefit, other farmers also came forward and followed the same technique of fish farming along with paddy.

Ayesha Begum and Mofasser Ali of Belgachha West Kalyan village released four and a half kg of fish fries on one bigha of aman paddy two months back.

They have so far sold fish valued at Tk 4,000 before harvesting paddy. They expect to sell more fishes worth Tk 5,000 during the harvesting time.

Farm manager of the District Fisheries Department Riaz Uddin said it is easy and profitable to cultivate fish along with paddy, as rainwater is available during the aman season.

Two NGOs – RDRS Bangladesh and KDS – imparted necessary training and assistance to the farmers for such fish farming.

If fish farming along with paddy at paddy fields spread all over the country, demand for rice along with protein will be fulfilled to a great extent. This will benefit farmers and the country’s economy as well.

HSBC arranges largest term financing in poultry sector

HSBC arranges largest term financing in poultry sector

The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) Ltd in Bangladesh arranges the largest syndicated term financing in the poultry sector for Kazi Grand Parents Limited. Kazi Grand Parents is a concern of Kazi Farms Group.

A ceremony marking the financial closure was held recently at a local hotel. Chief executives and senior officials of banks and Kazi Farms were present on the occasion. A syndicate of twenty banks will be providing Tk 1,250 million term financing and Tk 600 million working capital facilities for the expansion of poultry projects. The expansion projects will primarily establish backward linkage facilities for producing day–old-chicks and poultry feed for the poultry farmers of the country. Day-old-chicks and poultry feed are the raw materials required by the poultry farmers to produce chicken and table eggs, says a press release.

Apart from HSBC, the other banks in the syndicate are Bank Asia Limited, BRAC Bank Limited, The City Bank Limited, Commercial Bank of Ceylon PIc, Dhaka Bank Limited, Dutch BangIa Bank Limited, Eastern Bank Limited, ICB Islamic Bank Limited, IFIC Bank Limited, Mercantile Bank Limited, Mutual Trust Bank Limited, National Bank Limited, One Bank Limited, Prime Bank Limited, Pubali Bank Limited, Southeast Bank Limited, Trust Bank Limited, United Commercial Bank Limited, and Shahjalal Islami Bank Limited.

Today the poultry sector in Bangladesh is contributing significantly to national economy. Accordingly to an estimate, the poultry farmers are currently producing more than 400 million broilers and 6.6 billion eggs every year. At present, around 40 per cent of country’s meat requirement is met by poultry and the sector is growing at the rate of more than 10 per cent. The sector is not only supplying, animal protein at an affordable price, but also created more than 6million employment in the country.

Kazi Farms is the pioneer of scientific and modem poultry industry in Bangladesh. The company is the first one to establish vital backward linkages to locally produce Day-Old-Chicks from Grand Parents.

Frozen food exports to Russia resume

Frozen food exports to Russia resume
Sohel Parvez

Frozen foods export to Russia has resumed recently as the country gave a go-ahead to four local processors for shipping shrimp to its territory, industry insiders said.

They said reopening of export, based on quality parameters of Russian authorities, has opened up scope for Bangladesh’s frozen foods to diversify markets and reduce dependence mainly on EU and the US.

“It will enhance our exports and enable the sector to sustain. Opening of the Russian market will also increase our bargaining power with buyers,” said Masudur Rahman, director of Fresh Foods Ltd, one of the four companies that have got permission to open export to Russia.

Fresh Foods along with Bagerhat Sea Foods, Apex Foods and ARK Sea Foods got clearance to enter the Russian market based on an inspection report by a Russian veterinary team that had earlier visited Bangladesh’s shrimp processing plants and looked into hygiene practices.

“We are extremely happy. We have started shipping consignments to Russia,” said Ashim Kumar Barua, director of Apex Foods Ltd, one of the new entrants to Russian market.

Until January, processors of frozen foods, the second biggest forex earners, were exporting to Russia.

But exports came to a halt in January after Russia imposed a restriction on entry of Bangladesh’s shrimp on safety ground.

The restriction led to a 55 percent slump in export to the country to $14.78 million in fiscal year 2008-09 from $32.95 million a year ago.

The sanction forced Bangladesh to sign a bilateral understanding deal with Russia for facilitating frozen foods export to the country.

Officials of Department of Fisheries and other stakeholders said signing of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) would help open the market officially for Bangladesh’s frozen foods.

“The MoU between the governments will further facilitate entrance of Bangladesh’s shrimp. Entry to Russia will contribute to market diversification also,” said Syed Mahmudul Huq, chairman of Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation.

Insiders said exports of Bangladesh frozen foods, majority of which are shrimp, are mainly dependent on the European Union and the US markets. But any sanction by the authorities of these regions hurts the sector that offers jobs directly to more than 1 million people.

Leaders of Bangladesh Frozen Foods Exporters Association said exports to Russia would reduce dependence on EU markets and offer scope to explore other East Asian markets.