January 15: Gandaki Province has witnessed fall in paddy production this fiscal year. Paddy production has slumped by 3.74 per cent compared to the last year.
According to data at the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development, the province harvested 3,91,121 metric tons of paddy this year compared to 4,06,336 metric tons of paddy last fiscal year. In the province, paddy cultivation area has also shrunk.
Paddy was cultivated in 1,12,227 hectares of field last year compared to 1,06,380 hectares of land this fiscal year. Compared to other provinces, both paddy production and paddy cultivation area have decreased in Gandaki Province.
“Shrinking of paddy plantation field due to rise of houses and housing plots has led to drop in paddy produce,” said Basudev Regmi, Chief of Agriculture Development Directorate of the province.
“Urbanization and commercialization have increased in the arable land and land going barren have also soared, causing the paddy produce to fall,” added Regmi.
Regmi warned that rising tendency to construct houses in the arable land would make country more dependent on food in the days to come.
Adverse weather, shortage of chemical fertilizer, and substandard seeds have also caused the paddy produce to shrink, Regmi described.
Farmers had experienced fertilizer crunch at the time of paddy cultivation. Similarly, heavy rains had damaged the paddy at the time to bear the rice.
Farmer Baikuntha Sapkota of Baglung Municiplaity-3 says that he had harvested just 10 muri of paddy this year compared to 19 muri(traditional way of measurement) last fiscal.
Sapkota complained pests control, shortage of improved seeds and fertilizer management have always remained challenges for farmers.
Paddy productivity, however, has increased in all provinces this year. Productivity has gone up by 1.55 per cent in per hectare of the paddy field this year. Use of improved seeds, and improvement of cultivation have improved productivity, according to Agriculture Knowledge Center Baglung Chief Bhanubhakta Bhattarai.
Bhattarai said paddy produce declined five per cent in Baglung this fiscal year. Unseasonal rainfall had damaged the paddy production in the district.
Baglung’s Galkot and Balewa, Gorkha’s Palungtar, Kaski’s Lekhnath, Syangja’s aandhikhola Kinar, Waling, Tanahun’s Bhimad, Nawalpur’s Triveni and Madhyabindu and Parbat’s Faleshwal are pocket areas for paddy production in Gandaki Province.
Farmers have been planting various types of paddy including Ram, Sunaulosugandh, Loktantnatra, Khumal, improved Jethobudho in the province.
After Gandaki, Bagmati Province witnessed fall of paddy produce by 1.45 per cent this fiscal. Bagamti province had produced 5,07,789 metric tons of paddy last year compared to 5,00446 metric tons of the paddy this year.
Paddy production, nevertheless, increased in remaining five provinces.
Paddy production jumped by the highest rate of 33.33 per cent in Sudurpaschim Province. The province produced 5,89,221 metric tons of paddy this fiscal year compared to 4,41,913 metric tons of the paddy last year.
Country recorded production of 54,86,472 metric tons of paddy this year compared to 51,30,625 metric tons of rice last fiscal.