If Boro paddy grown during the pandemic can be harvested without any hassle, there will be no food shortage in the country this year, said Agriculture Minister Md Abdur Razzaq on Thursday.
He made the remark while addressing an inaugural ceremony virtually of a Boro paddy harvesting programme at Astana village in South Sunamganj upazilla of Sunamganj.
The target was to cultivate Boro at about 4.8 million hectares of land in the current season. But, exceeding the target, Boro has been grown on 48 lakh 83 thousand hectares of land. The government aims to produce 25 million tonnes of Boro rice.
Hybrid varieties were emphasised this year due to their higher yields, Razzaq said.
Compared to last year, hybrid rice has grown on about 3 lakh more hectares of land this year. Even if the average yield is about 1 tonne per hectare, the production will go up by at least 3 lakh tonnes.
"We are working to ensure that there is no food shortage so that people do not have to worry about food amid the pandemic," the minister said.
The country produces the largest amount of rice during the Boro season. That is why it is very important to cut paddy all over the country, including in haor areas. "If Boro paddy can be harvested successfully, there will be no risk of food shortage."
Razzaq also said the paddy price was a bit high due to floods in the last season. That is why at the beginning of the year the government planned to increase Boro production at any cost. Around Tk63 crore has been given in incentives to boost the cultivation of hybrid varieties of paddy alone, he added.