Fertiliser crunch hits farmers of far-western region hard

Dhangadi, November 11

Shortage of chemical fertiliser at the end of wheat cultivation season has hit farmers hard in the far western region.

Far western region is in need of 10,000 metric tons of Diammonium phosphate and 20,000 metric tons of urea.

Acting Manager at regional office of Agriculture Materials Company Limited, Durga Prasad Pandey, said his office had failed to sell chemical fertiliser in the region as the office received only half the quantity of the total demand.

“The country needs seven lakh metric tons of chemical fertiliser annually, but it only imports two to three lakh metric tons,” Pandey said.

Of the total 3,151 metric tons of urea imported in the district, as much as 2,550 metric tons was sold out. Of the total 2,890 metric tons DAP imported in the district, 2,750 metric was sold while there is still a stock of 140 metric tons.

Pandey said his office was preparing to import 500 metric tons of chemical fertiliser in the district to help maintain the supply for the time being.

The government has assigned Agriculture Material Company and Salt Trading the responsibility to import 70 and 30 per cent fertilisers respectively into the country.

Meanwhile, it is uncertain if the fertiliser will arrive at Salt Trading Limited Zonal Office Dhangadi. Assistant General Manager at the office Keshav Prasad Pandey said the centre had not responded when asked about the supply of fertiliser to the region.

Pandey said his office had written to the centre demanding 2,500 metric tons of chemical fertiliser.

Chemical fertiliser is imported to the far west via Bhairahawa. “Surprisingly, Bhairahawa itself is facing fertiliser crunch,” Pandey said.

As many as 150 cooperatives distribute fertilisers in far western districts, except for in Kanchanpur and Doti.