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Olive cultivation increases in S’ganj

Published : Sunday, 11 November, 2018 at 12:00 AM  Count : 86
Ashok Benarjee

SIRAJGANJ, Nov 10: It was hardly thought earlier that one day olive will be cultivated commercially in the district. Though there were some olive trees at some houses, the production was meagre.
Many people have planted two to three olive trees on their homesteads. Though the trees are not much big, these are full of olives. Besides, they are getting fair price of their produce. The number of olive trees is increasing in the district. Many markets centring olive have grown here.
While visiting, such a market was found in Bagbati Village of Sadar Upazila. The market sits on Sunday and Thursday each week. The olive is being loaded in different vehicles. The wholesalers are buying the olive taking those to different areas of the country. The local olive is big in size and of good quality; so many companies buy this olive.
Local Agriculture Department sources said olive was cultivated on 10 hectares of land in 2010, which has increased to 109 ha in 2018.
A local wholesaler Nurul Islam Malik said about 60 to 80 maunds of olive is sold in this market in two days. The olive season is from the middle of the Bengali month of Ashwin to the end of Agrahayan. The local olives are sent to Dhaka, Chattogram and other areas.
While talked, one Abdul Quddus said, "I have planted four olive trees on my homestead. The olives are big in size. I sell per kilogram olive at Taka 15 to 25."
Assistant Teacher of Bagbati High School Jahangir Alam said, "Our area is suitable for olive cultivation. Many local people have changed their lots through olive farming. Seeing others, I have also planted 10 olive trees. There are olive trees in almost all houses in the village. Many people are commercially cultivating olive."
He also said, if olive does not grow in one year, it grows in other year. Besides, the olive tree wood can be used in various purposes.
Acting Deputy Director of the Department of Agriculture Extension in Sirajganj SM Shahid Nur Akbar said many people used to plant olive trees on their homesteads but that was very meagre. Only five years back, it was not cultivated much. But, now it is being commercially cultivated. Its farming does not require much toil or fertilisers and pesticides. The yield is also good in small space. Due to much output and fair price, many people are cultivating it on more lands.

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