Mouth-watering litchis start appearing in Rajshahi, Rangpur markets

Dhaka,  Thu,  27 July 2017
Published : 13 May 2017, 20:56:06
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Mouth-watering litchis start appearing in Rajshahi, Rangpur markets

Our Correspondent

BOGRA, May 13: Litchi has started appearing in the markets of eight districts under Rajshahi division from the first week of May.

The retail price of a bundle of 50 good quality at Tk 150 to Tk 200 while wholesale rate is Tk 120 to Tk 150. Market sources said present price of the juicy fruit is high due to low supply against demand.

According to the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE), around 5,500 growers of Bogra, Chapainawabganj, Joypurhat, Naogaon, Natore, Pabna, Rajshahi and Sirajganj districts have grown the summer delicacy in 3,000 small, middle and big orchards this season. But prolonged drought-like situation affected growth of litchi and its production.

Most of the litchi traders of the districts sell the fruits setting up makeshift shops at road-side, said Bazlur Rashid, a fruit seller at Dupchanchia fruit market of Bogra.

Litchi cultivation is expanding rapidly through private sector initiatives across the area as it is proved them more profitable than paddy cultivation, said horticulture specialist Tahirul Islam. A good number of people of the division have changed their financial condition by commercial farming of the mouthwatering summer fruit, he added.

Official sources said prices of the fruit will come down to reasonable within a couple of weeks.

Meanwhile, BSS adds: The ripe and half-ripe early litchi varieties have already started appearing in the local markets with lucrative price making the growers happy in Rangpur division.

According to the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) sources, harvest of hybrid litchi varieties will start by this month-end while early Bombay and Madrazi varieties have appeared now in the local markets with price beyond reach of the commoners.

Markets sources on Saturday said every hundred pieces of the early Bombay and Madrazi litchi varieties are being sold at rates between Tk 300 and Tk400.

Meanwhile, litchi traders or their representatives form different parts of the country have already flocked to the region and purchased the growing fruit in advance from orchard owners like in the previous seasons.

Hundreds of labourers will get job when harvesting, packaging and marketing of litchi will get full momentum soon in Kurigram, Lalmonirhat, Nilphamari, Rangpur, Dinajpur, Thakurgaon, Gaibandha, Panchagarh districts in the division, the sources said.

Talking to the news agency, Horticulture Specialist of the DAE Khondker Md Mesbahul Islam said 95 per cent of litchi trees in 9,300 small, medium and big-sized orchards and homesteads on 7,500 hectares of land bloomed massively this time in the division.

"The farmers have mostly cultivated Bombay, Madrazi and high yielding varieties like China-3, China-4, 'Bedana', 'Mozaffarpuri' and late variety 'Kanthali' litchi after getting repeated bumper production with excellent price every year," he said.

He said the farmers have cultivated litchi in over 700 orchards on 4,180 hectares of land alone in Dinajpur district that produces the highest quantity of the most delicious, juicy and fleshy seasonal fruit in the country.

"The farmers have also cultivated litchi in 180 orchards on 1,437 hectares of land in Rangpur district as cultivation of the most popular fruit has been increasing every year in all eight districts under Rangpur division," Mesbahul added.

Litchi orchard owners Mubarak Hossain of Birganj upazila and Hore Krishna of Sadar upazila in Dinajpur and growers Atiar Rahman of Sadar upazila and Mohammad Ali of Badarganj upazila in Rangpur predicted bumper litchi production this season.

Predicting bumper litchi output this season, Regional Additional Director of the DAE Shah Alam said litchi farming has already created a silent economic revolution bringing self-reliance to hundreds of farmers in recent years in the region.

"There is a brighter prospect for further expanding commercial basis litchi cultivation in greater Dinajpur and Rangpur districts though the quality litchis were being produced mainly in the Barind areas even a decade ago," he said.
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