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Samangan wheat harvest 28pc down this season: official





Samangan wheat harvest 28pc down this season: official

Jul 11, 2017 - 12:00

AIBAK (Pajhwok): A 28 percent drop has been estimated in wheat harvest in northern Samangan province this season despite cultivation of the crop on a nine percent more land, an official says.

Najibullah Joya, an official at the provincial agricultureinfo-icon, irrigation and livestock department, told Pajhwok Afghan News that dry spell was the main factor behind the drop in wheat harvest this year. He said wheat cultivated on thousands of hectares dried in many areas due to the lack of rains.

The affected areas include Qaflani, Koka Balaq, Alsha, Dara-i-Kalan, Kokjar, Omli, and Laili Sai of Harazat Sultan district and Shalkato, Shirkiyar, Do Koh, Manqotan, Akhta Khana, Rabatak and Taikhonak areas belonging to Aibak, the provincial capital, he added.

Last year, 95,000 tonnes of wheat was harvested from 115,000 hectares of land, including rain-fed, but a latest study estimated this year’s yield at 68,000 tonnes from 125,000 hectares.

According to the provincial agriculture department, Samangan needs 80,000 tonnes of wheat per year. Growers start harvesting the crop in late May in the province where in some areas the harvesting is still ongoing.

Farmers also complained about the decreased wheat yield. Mohammad Amin, a resident of Shorab village of Khurram Sarbagh district, recalled his eight acres of land produced 1750kgs of wheat last year. But this year due to drought and lack of rains, he collected 630kgs.

Meanwhile, Mohammad Rasool, another farmer hailing from Mullahtash Shirikyar village of Aibak, the provincial capital, said he cultivated two acres of rain-fed land with wheat crop, but it produced no grain due to the dry spell. Rasool said now he was obliged to sell his 15 sheep to buy wheat for consumption.

It’s pertinent to mention here that the Ministry of Commerce and Industries has recently said Afghanistaninfo-icon is close to becoming self-sufficient in wheat and flour production.


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