Government Policy

Jute growers paying for drought that resulted in discoloured fibre

Although local markets in Faridpur district, better known as hub of jute production, have been buzzing with the presence of buyers and sellers, the smile on the faces of jute growers is fading due to low price their yield is fetching.

People involved with jute purchase say that the reason for not paying higher is the discoloured fibre they are getting, as the jute plants were not decomposed properly.

Jute growers have started appearing with their fibres at different local markets in several upazilas including Saltha, Nagarkanda and Boalmari of the district for the last few days. But they are in a sombre mood due to the low price they are getting, that is often short of their production cost during what is the peak season of jute.

The jute growers claimed that they had to count an extra cost for the process of retting that they must put the jute plants through this year, using underground water lifted by shallow machines that run on diesel.

Jute growers paying for drought that resulted in discoloured fibre

The district’s Kanaipur Hat is one of the famous local markets for sale and buy of jute fiber, which sits on Tuesdays and Fridays weekly. Marginal growers bring their fibres to bag good money at the market which abounds with several jute buying centres of government and private jute mills.

Visiting the market, this correspondent found that a maund of jute fiber has been sold for Tk 2200 to Tk 2800 which was Tk 2500 to Tk 4000 last year. However every year the market witnesses sale and buy of 20,000 to 25,000 maunds of jute during the season. A maund is close to 40 kg.

Read: Scanty rains worry Aman, Jute growers in Thakurgaon

Sources in the district’s Department of Agricultural Extension said the production target has been set at 2, 50,000 metric tonnes of fibre on the 87,000 hectres of land this year.

Jute growers Sattar Matubbar, Kalam Molla and Jiten Sarkar, who brought their goods to the market, told this correspondent that they are frustrated at the price offered by the buyers.

Jute growers paying for drought that resulted in discoloured fibre

The production cost of jute plants increased due to scarcity of water this year as they had to manage alternative ways to decompose these.

“It will be difficult for them to run families with the money bagged by selling the fibres as the price of daily essential commodities soared drastically in recent times,” they lamented.

Jute businessman and also Kanaipur Union Parishad Chairman Fakir Belayet Hossain said though buyers usually purchase the jute fibres from the farmers at the market directly, this year the businesses are reluctant to offer a good price due to discoloration.

Nazrul Islam, president of Faridpur Chamber of Commerce, said that not only the jute growers will incur loss but also the individuals including businesses, mills and factories involved with the business.

Mentionable, jute growers across the country could not decompose their plants through the process of retting properly under the knee-deep water in the water bodies due to the drought-like situation in the full rainy season this year.

Source: United News of Bangladesh