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Local potato dealers at a market in Khulna, Bangladesh in 2016 (Courtesy: Mathess)

Local potato dealers at a market in Khulna, Bangladesh in 2016 (Courtesy: Mathess)

Aiming to give a boost to potato exports, the government of Bangladesh has decided to provide all sorts of support for its export and processing as the crop’s annual production surged past 10 million (1 crore) metric tonnes in the country.

Dr. Muhammad Abdur Razzaque Agriculture Minister of Bangladesh:
 
"Over one crore tonnes of potato are produced annually in Bangladesh. But we need to import potato chips and pringles at high prices. Local firms will have to produce quality chips, pringles and French fry processing potato with added values."
The minister said this while addressing a views exchange at the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council (BARC) auditorium over the enhancement of potato processing. He also stressed the need for the diversified use of potatoes and finding out formulas to produce other products by it.
 
Dr. Muhammad Abdur Razzaque Agriculture Minister of Bangladesh

Dr. Muhammad Abdur Razzaque Agriculture Minister of Bangladesh

Dr. Razzaque said there was a lack of good quality potatoes in the country in the past, which was a large barrier to its export and processing. But its high-yielding varieties have already been brought from foreign sources.

Describing potato as a very potential crop, he said Bangladesh’s weather and soil are very suitable for its farming.

Muhammad Abdur Razzaque:
 
"If we can expand its market, it would be possible to boost its production."
The minister said the prices of potatoes are low this year and the farmers and the cold storage owners are worried over its sale.

Muhammad Abdur Razzaque:
 
"So, the potato market will have to be expanded both at home and abroad."
A total of 1.06 crore tonnes of potato was produced in the country in the 2020-21 fiscal year, but only 55,000 tonnes were exported fetching USD 51 million, according to the data shared at the program.
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