Farmers in the region including the vast barind tract are showing much interest in vegetable farming as it fetches them more profit than any other crop.
As a result, vegetable farming is on the gradual rise.
However, the irrigation costs being incurred by farmers are high because of changing climatic condition.
Meanwhile, the early harvest of winter vegetables also made farmers happy as they got better prices during the season’s start, farmers and market sources said.
Horticulture Specialist Monzurul Huda said Rajshahi had been regarded as the country’s most prospective vegetable producing region. Production of vegetables was one of the major income-generating activities in the region, he added.
“Consumption of fresh vegetables and fruits are helpful in fortifying the physical and mental power of babies”, he clarified.
In terms of food and nutritive values, green vegetables are vital as these are enriched with vitamin A, B, C, calcium and iron that are essential for the human body irrespective of age and sex.
He said due to its environmental and financial aspects, more people have been involving themselves in horticulture recently, creating a huge demand for fruit saplings, vegetable seeds and saplings of ornamental plants.
Deputy Director of Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE)
Nurul Amin said the DAE had set a target of bringing 7,430 hectares under vegetable farming in the district during the current winter season and that the farmers had exceeded the fixed target.
“Farming of late variety winter vegetables will continue even after the harvesting of traditional variety T-Aman paddy,’ the DAE officials said.
Apart from this, different commercial banks, Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank and NGOs disbursed agriculture loans and interest- free loans amongst farmers to make the massive vegetable farming programme successful.
The DAE officials are expecting a bumper production of vegetables during the current season.