Logar farmers seek profitable market for onion
PUL-I-ALAM (Pajhwok): Farmers of central Logar province say their onion yield has increased this year, but the price has declined by 70 percent, compared to last year’s rates.
A resident of the Purak village on the outskirts of Pul-i-Alam, Fazal Ahmad, told Pajhwok Afghan News there was no market for the onion crop this year.
“I cultivated 1.5 acres of land with onion. Although the cultivation cost is high, there is no costumer to purchase our produce,” he said.
In 2015, he sold a 112-kg bag of onion for Rs3,000 (1916 afghanis) but this year he sold the same amount of the crop for only Rs900 ($8.6), he said.
Likewise, a grower from the Daudkhel area of the provincial capital, Nasimullah, has been cultivating the crop on 10 acres of land over the past one decade.
“Last year, I earned nearly 1.5 million afs from onions, but there is no buyr for the crop this year,” he lamented.
The cultivation cost of 2.5 acres of onion was nearly 100,000afs, said a dweller of the Aab Bazak area of Mohammad Agha district, Gulab Khan.
“People have cultivated hundreds of acres with the crop in the hope to earn good incomes, but there is no market for the onions in our area,” he said.
Other farmers of the province had a similar complaint, asking the government to find market for their produce. Chairman of Logar Farmers’ Association Zamanuddin said it was the government’s responsibility to find market for the onion.
“There are neither wholesalers nor retailers coming to the area to purchase onion, so the government should contract other countries to find a market for our produce,” he dmanded.
Director of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock Mohammad Hamayun Omar said 1400 hectares of land had been cultivated with onion this year.
“Our farmers earn remarkable incomes from the produce, but this year they are yet to sell their crops. I think one of the reasons is the strained relationship with Pakistan,” he said.
According to the agriculture department, last year the total onion yield was 3800 tonnes, with per 112-kg costing 2,000afs.
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