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30 April 2014 Wednesday 7:52:21 PM
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Increase of agricultural productivity stressed to reduce rural poverty
Anisur Rahman Swapan

Participants and organizers of a media briefing in the city Wednesday noon stressed on increase of agricultural productivity to reduce rural poverty and improve food security through advice smallholder farmers and raise the awareness of quality input products.

They said access to high-quality agro-inputs is one of the greatest challenges facing farmers in southern Bangladesh. Farmers are often unaware of the improved technologies that have been developed and lack information on how to appropriately use quality inputs.

The programme was organized at Celebration Point auditorium under Agro-Inputs Project (AIP) in Bangladesh funded United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

It was addressed and participated among others by Mark Treacy, Chief of Party , Mahbub Alam. AIRN supply chain advisor Maksudur Rahman,senior agribusiness advisor, Hasan Zahir , IT & communications specialist, Sajeda Yesmin , gender specialist, Abu Saleh Muhammad Saifullah, AIP advisor, Moksed Ali, coordinator, Alamgir Farid, member Agro-Inputs Retailers’ Network (AIRN) and representatives from different print and electronic media.

The organizers said AIP in through survey and conducting workshops across 25 upazillas in Bangladesh’s Feed-the-Future region retailers determined the constraints and opportunities that could be addressed through services provided by AIRN for creation of a sustainable agro input retailers network.

The project ultimately help expanding network of at least 3,000 agro input retailers, serving over 1 million smallholders, impacting more than 5 million individuals across 20 southern districts and generating more than $100 million in sales.

AIRN aims to deliver training, improve the supply of quality agricultural inputs through retailers in the Feed-the-Future region of Bangladesh’s southern delta, the organizers informed.

The trainings will cover business management and ethics, safe use, and agronomic practices for increasing production will establish more than 300 demonstration plots and hold at least 900 field days in the southern delta in collaboration with AIP, the project officials explained.

Alamgir Farid, member AIRN, said he becoming a member of this network taking access to trainings on the handling, storage, field application, and disposal of agriculture chemicals providing ethical solutions by supplying and selling quality agro-inputs.

He also commented that that membership in the AIRN increases his knowledge about quality agro-inputs so he can better advise his customers about their use to improve yield, access agronomic and agro-inputs information, and increase the visibility of his shop in the local market.

Through these activities agricultural productivity will increase, rural poverty will reduce and food security in the southern delta of Bangladesh would be improved, the participant journalists hoped.

Edited By: Central Desk

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