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Net house potato farming gains ground in Rajshahi

Net house potato farming gains ground in Rajshahi

Potato farming through net house system for multiplying the tissue-culture based potato seed successfully has been gaining popularity in Rajshahi region. That opens up a new door in the cash crop farming.
Abu Hena Mostofa Kamal, a commercial farmer of Mollikpur village under Paba upazila, said number and acreage of the modern farming method has been enhanced significantly for the
last couple of years because of its better output.
He has transplanted 4,000 plantlets while Mustafiz of Ghipara village 2,000 plantlets and they were very busy nurturing their growing plantlets.
Nur Alam of Khanpur and Masum of Parjunpara under Mohanpur upazila and Ali Afzal of Jamalpur village under Bagmara upazila said that they are very happy with the present farming condition.
Mijanur Rahman Kazi, general secretary of Seed Potato Growers Cooperative Society, told BSS that around 500 seed growing farmers were very happy with their satisfactory yield achieved through using the net-house farming method last year.
He said the farming of foundation seed of potato through using tissue culture technology and net-house system has gradually been gaining popularity everywhere in the region for the last couple of years.
The private entrepreneurs are showing interest in
boosting the mother potato-seed production locally after using the modern technology instead of depending on the local seed.
Apart from this, the potato growers are also showing their interest in cultivating potato through using thefoundation see d as they have been reaping more yields.
He said the existing crisis of breeder seed could be solved easily through successful expansion of tissue culture technology at the grassroots as there was a bright prospect of enhancing the production of breeder seed through best uses of the innovated technology.
In addition to comparatively higher production and hygienic, the tissue culture seed was 100 per cent virus and disease free, healthy, high quality and environment-friendly, he informed.
Potato production could be enhanced at least 50 percent on the existing acreage if only the quality seed were ensured among the growers.
SM Mustafizur Rahman, Additional Director of Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE), said there has been a tremendous demand for tissuee cultured plantlets in the region.
Not only farmers, but many educated youths, business personnel and traders have become self-reliant by using tissue cultured saplings in this region, he added.
Agriculturist Rahman says DAE has set a target of producing more than 45.67 lakh tonnes of potato from 1.68 lakh hectares of land in the Rajshahi division during the current season.
Professor Monzur Hossain of Rajshahi University, pioneer in innovation of tissue cultured saplings, said they had innovated the method of producing tissue culture potato-seed in 1987.
Since then, he has been disseminating the developed technology to both the private and public level seed producing farms significantly.
To meet the local demands, the nation had to depend on import from abroad through spending huge hard-earned foreign currencies, he added.
‘We can reduce dependence on import through enhancing domestic production through proper and best uses of the modern technologies in the farming and the tissue culture is one of the potential and proven technologies,’ he said.
In many areas, he said cultivation of cash crops through tissue culture has brought a silent revolution in
agricultural sector.
Thousands of farmers have changed their lot by growing quality crops through using tissue cultured saplings. To feed farmers with sterile saplings, over 20 tissue culture laboratories are now functioning commercially in the region, reports BSS from Rajshahi.