The government on Monday decided to procure three lakh tonnes of husked Aman rice during the on-going Aman season at Tk 32 a kilogram from the millers.
The government decided not to buy un-husked rice from the growers, said food minister Qamrul Islam. He announced the decision at a press briefing at the secretariat after a meeting of Food Planning and Monitoring Unit at the secretariat.
Finance minister AMA Muhith, agriculture minister Matia Chowdhury, commerce minister Tofail Ahmed and concerned officials attended the meeting.
The food minister said procurement of Aman rice would begin from November 15 and it would continue up to February 28, 2015.
When asked, Golam Hafeez (Kennedy), associate professor of Agricultural Economics faculty at Bangladesh Agriculture University told New Age on Monday that as the government decided to procure rice from millers, the growers would not get benefit from the government mechanism.
Kennedy, also vice president of Bangladesh Agricultural Economists Association, said that the growers would be bound to sell their paddy at lower price in the market. The millers would ultimately make the benefit, he said.
Agriculture ministry officials said the government estimated a target to grow 1.34 crore tonnes of Aman rice during the current year.
Earlier on October 14, an inter-ministerial meeting estimated the production cost of each kg of husked Aman rice at Tk 28, up from last year’s Tk 25.42.
It also estimated the production cost of each kg of un-husked Aman rice at Tk 18, up from last year’s Tk 17.02, said agriculture ministry officials.
It took into the consideration the inputs provided by the Department of Agriculture Marketing, Department of Agricultural Extension and Bangladesh Rice Research Institute, said officials.
They said that the production cost went up due to increased costs of tilling, organic fertilizers, zinc, irrigation as well as family labour and hired farm hands.
-With New Age input