The farmers have produced 46,954 tonnes of sweet potato in five districts under Rangpur agriculture region during the Rabi season.
The farmers are also happy with the local market price of the newly harvested sweet potato between Taka 600 and 700 per 40 kg depending on the varieties and qualities.
Officials of the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) said a target of producing 49,635 tonnes of sweet potato from 2,660 hectares of land was fixed for Rangpur, Gaibandha, Kurigram, Lalmonirhat and Nilphamari districts in the region. However, the farmers had cultivated the crop on 2,157 hectares land.
Horticulture Specialist of the DAE Khondker Md Mesbahul Islam said, the char people are showing interests in farming sweet potato on the sandy char lands.
"People living in the remote char areas are also consuming sweet potato as alternative foodstuff," Islam added.
Deputy Director of the DAE Md Moniruzzaman said the sandy-loamy and sandy lands are suitable for farming of the low-cost but more profitable cash crop of sweet potato without using fertilisers and irrigation on the char lands.
He called upon the farmers for increasing production of sweet potato and suggested for changing food habit to reduce pressure on rice as sweet potato has the same carbohydrate, more nutrient and vitamin than many other major food like rice.
Senior Coordinator (Agriculture and Environment) of RDRS Bangladesh Mamunur Rashid said production of sweet potato could be increased further and its large-scale consumption could help in reducing pressure on rice to ensure food security..