In the Gopalganj district, using modern technology of agriculture in Kachuripana floating bed has created immense potential to ensure food security. Now, vegetables, fruits, herbs, and spices are being produced commercially throughout the year on floating beds. Farmers are getting a profit by selling these vegetables, fruits, and spices. 1 thousand 800 farmers of 5 Upazilas in the Gopalganj district have adopted this profitable technology. Deputy Director of Gopalganj Agricultural Extension Department Dr. Arvind Kumar Roy informed this information.
The official also said that vegetables have been produced in the floating beds of Kachuripana in Gopalganj for hundreds of years. The farmers of Tungipara Upazila, including the flooded Mitradanga, and nearby villages invented this method for their own needs. They used to increase the size of the bed. So the bed would break in the air. There was no end to their problems in this cultivation. At that time, they used to grow leafy vegetables such as lady's fingers, red vegetables, and datashak in this bed. The Agricultural Research Institute undertook a research expansion and popularization project on floating bed vegetable and spice cultivation 5 years ago by applying modern technology to floating agriculture instead of traditional methods. Later they started research work with farmers on the field level. They reduce the size of the bed. He started the cultivation of leaves, vines, fruits, and spices in floating beds. It has brought great success to Gopalganj. And this success has created the immense potential for ensuring food security.
Floating bed vegetable and spice farming research expansion and popularization project director Dr. Mostafizur Rahman Talukder said, our agricultural land is decreasing. The population is increasing day by day. Along with this, there is a risk of disruption of agricultural production due to climate change. To meet these challenges, the government took this project with the aim of increasing agricultural production through the best use of land in flooded areas during monsoon. For the last 5 years, we have been working with the modern technology of floating agriculture. This technology has made it possible to ensure nutrition by producing food. Along with that, food is within the reach of people. Additional Secretary of the Extension Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, Rabindrashri Barua, visited Mitradanga village of Tungipara Upazila of Gopalganj to cultivate modern technology of floating agriculture. He also shared experiences with farmers, researchers, and agricultural extension officers. He will present it to the country's policymakers. Then the policymakers will take a decision in this regard. If the modern technology of floating agriculture is expanded, it will be possible to ensure the nutrition of the common people by increasing the food production of the country.
Dr. Mohsin Howladar and H.M. Khairul Basar, senior scientific officers of the Gopalganj surface research department of the Agricultural Research Institute, said that most of the land in Gopalganj is under water for 8 months of the year. Only one crop Borodhan was produced in these lands in a year. Therefore, farmers make floating beds on the water by utilizing the water waste to increase agricultural production. He used to cultivate and produce leafy vegetables there. In this, they could meet family expenses. We have taught farmers modern technology of floating bed agriculture. Now they are producing various crops commercially here including Watermelon, Bangi, Onion, Chilli, Ginger, Turmeric, Cucumber, Gourd, Pumpkin, Tomato, Lady’s finger, Chichinga, Cauliflower, Jhinge, Cabbage, Broccoli, Red Cabbage, Ghee-Kanchan Cabbage, Palongshak, etc. They are eating these themselves. They are earning money by selling the extra crop in the market. The cultivation of this method indicates the food security of the country.
Sakthi Pad Kirttanya (65), a farmer of Mitradanga village, said that we are 15/20 farmers who cultivate using modern technology in floating beds throughout the year. I can earn a lot of money by selling the crops that are produced in the market. We see many people tending to farms in floating beds all year round. This method of farming produces safe crops free of poison. So there is a huge demand for our products in the market.
Krishani Champa Kirttanya (50) of Mitradanga village said, "Earlier, we used to cultivate floating beds as shown by our grandfathers. The crops were not so good there. Crops are improving after the adoption of modern technology. We are fine now.
Rabindrashree Barua, Additional Secretary of the Extension Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, said that there are 229 Bils and wetlands in Gopalganj. They get submerged during monsoons. A lot of kachuripana is available here. Therefore, if we can expand cultivation in 229 Bils and reservoirs by making floating beds on the water with kachuripana, the vegetables produced on floating beds from this district will be able to meet the vegetable demand of a large part of the country. He also said that in the cultivation of this method, modern equipment for making beds with kachuripana is used in different countries of the world. Here it will be recommended to add those modern technologies to this cultivation. I visited the floating bed cultivation area. I have exchanged the experience of those concerned with it. This I will present to the policymakers. They will decide on the future of this cultivation. But I think this method of farming will play a role in ensuring food security and nutrition.