Two malta farmers become self-reliant at Bhandaria
BHANDARIA, PIROJPUR, Jan 14: Two farmers in Bhandaria Upazila of the district, Zakir Hossen and Abu Hossen, have become self-reliant through farming malta.
Their malta fruits are poison-free. Seeing their success, many others are being interested to develop malta orchards.
A visit found their two orchards full of malta fruits. Wholesalers from Dhaka and Khulna were seen purchasing maltas.
In 2017, Md Zakir Hossen of Atarkhali Village under Ikri Union in the upazila made a demonstration orchard in 10-acre lands with 300 saplings of BARI-1 malta. At present, there are 700 trees in his garden.
He has also cultivated different vegetable items, including ginger, turmeric, Malabar spinach, bitter gourd and lady's finger.
Being exhausted by unemployed life, he had taken preparation for going abroad. But fate did not support. His plan got bogged down.
He said, "At first, I started farming banana. But it gave me loss due to flood. Later at the advice of a local teacher, I farmed malta."
He also said, "I have already sold 100 maunds of malta to a wholesaler Md Idris Mia of Badamtali area in Dhaka. As my maltas are very tasty and big, Idris Mia came to my farm from Dhaka to make advance for more booking."
Zakir Hossen said, "My orchard has cost me Tk 3.5 lakh. At first, I sold maltas worth Tk 3.6 lakh. There are more 400 maunds of malta for sales. The market price of these will be Tk 14.40 lakh."
He also said, "My cousin Abu Hossen has raised a malta orchard in two-acre lands. In the orchard, 300 saplings of BARI Malta-1 were planted. Huge numbers of malta have appeared in his orchard."
Proprietor of Khulna Bhai Bhai Fruit Bhandar Md Ruhul Amin came to his farm and purchased 50 maunds of malta.
Ruhul Amin said this malta is juicy and free of chemical. Consumers are purchasing this tasty fruit. The price is cheaper compared to that of imported one. He purchased this malta at Tk 80 to 90 per kg, and sells it in Khulna at Tk 120. There is huge demand of this malta.
Many others like teacher Harun-ur-Rashid became interested to cultivate malta. It is expected that the entire village will become a malta village in the next one or two years. These two farmers are advising others.
Upazila Nirbahi Officer Md Nazmul Alam Nabin and Upazila Agriculture Officer Md Abdullah Al Mamun visited the malta orchards and were overwhelmed seeing hanging malta fruits. They gave them assurance of giving all out cooperation.