Agriculturist Dr Md Abdul Mazid, who got the Independence Award 2018 Medal on food security category last year, said Bangladesh has achieved laudable success in adapting to climate change in the agriculture sector to increase food production.
Appreciating the pragmatic steps taken by the government in last years to increase food productivity by adapting to changing climate, he said the farmers have already started reaping benefits of adoption of CA-based technologies in the country.
He said large-scale cultivation of climate smart crops adopting proven technologies, best farm practices, balanced fertilization and pest control and expansion of irrigation facilities are major reasons behind boost in food output.
“Bangladesh is producing over 34.8 million metric tonnes of clean rice annually in addition to other cereal crops making the country self-reliant on food for its 160 million populations on way to attain the sustainable development goals by 2030,” he said.
The growth in rice production will continue to increase following various pragmatic steps of the government to further enhance its output by almost one and a half times by 2050 to feed probable 220 million populations.
Dr Mazid, a former Chief Scientific Officer of Bangladesh Rice Research Institute, said farmers have started using improved eco-friendly agriculture technologies and practices almost having no adverse effects on the environment and bio-diversity.
“We have to ensure effective extension of latest technologies among the farmers using ICT and video-based training facilities to resolve agricultural and local natural resource problems for attaining sustainability in agriculture,” he said.
He suggested for adoption of resource-conserving and CA-based technologies, practices, integrated pest and nutrient managements and agro- forestry for keeping food production increasing all the time for sustainable agriculture.
Horticulture Specialist of the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) at its regional office Khondker Md Mesbahul said food production is increasing consistently following adoption of CA-based technologies and farm mechanisation in last one decade.
The farmers produced 34.22-lakh tonnes of rice and wheat in five districts of Rangpur agriculture region alone during the 2016-2017 seasons against 18.90-lakh tonnes food demand of 1.61-crore population with 15.32- lakh tonnes surplus food.
“However, the farmers produced 29.40-lakh tonnes rice and wheat during the 2008-2009 seasons against 17.26-lakh tonnes food demand of 1.04-crore population then with 12.14-lakh tonnes surplus food in the region,” Islam added.
He hoped that the nation might attain sustainability in agriculture soon as crop intensity stood at 230.57 percent during 2016-2017 against 214 percent in 2008-2009 seasons as the trend continues in Rangpur agriculture region as elsewhere in the country.
Deputy Director of the DAE at its regional office here Md Moniruzzaman told DailyBangladesh that the food productivity would continue to increase as the farmers already started using quality seed of climate smart crops and CA-based technologies in crop cultivation.
“To increase food productivity consistently, we have to reach quality seed of high yielding crops and technologies for seed production of hybrid crops to the farmers along with providing necessary training on latest technologies,” he said.
He suggested agriculture scientists for conducting continuous research to innovate more climate smart high yielding and hybrid varieties of crops to further increase food productivity adopting CA-based technologies for ensuring food security.