Dhaka, Bangladesh
Vermicompost fertiliser gaining popularity in Mymensingh

Vermicompost fertiliser gaining popularity in Mymensingh

Our Correspondent MYMENSINGH, Sept 11: Vermicompost fertiliser, popularly known as "Kenchu Sar" is gaining popularity among great number of the farmers of Fulbaria Upazila of the district. During recent years, this fertiliser has been playing a significant role in producing much more yield of crops than traditional chemical fertilisers. On the other hand, vermicompost fertiliser is also increasing fertility of the soil, according to local growers. The dependence on chemical fertiliser is decreasing and use of vermicompost is increasing here day by day in Fulbaria Upazila Cement-made pot, bins, and concrete ring are commonly used in small-scale in the production process of vermicompost fertiliser having at least 8 to 12-inch deep with earth worms and cow dung. The size will depend on the amount of feedstock and bedding available, according to people associated with the newly innovated fertiliser. In course of having comprehensive discussion on the newly innovated fertiliser made by marginal village women, Professor of the Department of Horticulture of Bangladesh Agricultural University Dr. Md. Ashraful Islam told The News Today,"Excessive use of chemical fertiliser, non-use of organic manure and continuous cultivation of the same crop in the same land are the main causes decreasing fertility of agricultural land." While discussing with the persons well conversant in the process, this correspondent came to know that Vermicompost should be on an average every 30 days to maximize production. Firstly, Fulbaria Area Programme of World Vision Bangladesh, provided some kind of training on vermicompost technology to 20 housewives of Natuapara Village under Fulbaria Upazila in 2016. Those women supplied them cement-made pots and earthworms at free of cost. With the passage of time, the housewives after getting training on vermicompost, started producing vermicompost fertiliser during leisure time. The newly innovative idea of producing vermicompost fertiliser became a new light in darkness for those extremely poor and marginal village women. The new production process, has, many a way, changed their lifestyle . A total of 50 housewives of the village are now making vermicompost fertiliser in leisure time. Gradually more and more number of farmers started using vermicompost fertiliser. They are using the new fertiliser in many areas. The name and better usefulness of this different type of fertiliser was transmitted to different areas of Fulbaria Upazila. Farmers of different villages of Fulbara Upazila are now using such fertiliser collecting from the producers of Natuapara Village, locals said. While talking with Sub-Assistant Agriculture Officer (SAO) of Fulbaria Upazila Agriculture Office, Sultan Mallick, he said, " Indiscriminate use of chemical fertiliser threatening fertility of the land." On the other hand, vermicompost manure is environment friendly and economical as such poor and marginal level farmers are being benefited much by using this manure on the land, he added. After a recent visit to Natuapara Village in Kushmail Union, this correspondent found that Amena Khatun, wife of Mustafizur Rahman, is working at her homestead garden. Narrating her experience she said, " I produce on an average 100 kilograms of vermicompost during leisure time in all working days and every month, sell the surplus product after using these in my homestead garden. The vegetables produced in my garden not only meet the nutrition demand of my family members, but by selling surplus vegetables I could bear the educational expenses of my children. I also earn additional Tk 800 by selling surplus vermicompost at Tk 8 per kilogram" she maintained. Minara Begum, wife of Golam Mustafa, another female farmer of the same village narrating the production process said, "I collect cow dung and place it on a polythene sheet in cement pots for at least 12 days. Then I add earthworms and cover the mixture with gunny bags for 15 days. Then it becomes ready for use as compost fertiliser after separation of the earthworms." Another woman Shilpi Begum, wife of Billal Hossain, of the same village described her experience saying " I produced 50 per cent more yield of paddy last season by using vermicompost." "Vermicompost is being sold at Tk 8 to Tk 10 per kilogram as there is no marketing facility of it in Fulbaria area," said Shamsul Hoque, chairman of Kushmail Union Parishad. "The female farmers could earn some additional income by selling surplus vermicompost after using in their crop fields," added the chairman. "The dependence on chemical fertiliser is decreasing and use of vermicompost is increasing here day by day in Fulbaria Upazila. The fertiliser is cheaper and increases the fertility of the land, and it is also environment friendly," said James Biswas, area programme (AP) manager of World Vision Bangladesh. "The vermicompost producers are deprived of fair price of their product due to lack of its marketing facility," added the AP manager.

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