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Farmers achieve bumper tomato yield by using bacteria instead of pesticides, hormones

Farmers achieve bumper tomato yield by using bacteria instead of pesticides, hormones

Alangkar Gupta, HSTU

Researchers have conducted experimental cultivation of tomatoes using chemical pesticide and hormone-free methods for several years, resulting in bumper yields for farmers this time around.

Dr. Md. Azizul Haque, Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Agriculture Department at Hajee Mohammad Danesh Science and Technology University, Dinajpur,
revealed that farmers are delighted with the high yields obtained at minimal cost.

Under a joint initiative by UNESCO's World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), Dr. Azizul Haque and his team have achieved significant success in tomato cultivation using minimal amounts of urea, phosphate, and bacteria, without any chemical pesticides or hormones. They are also researching the use of bacteria in crops such as tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants, rice, and pulses.

Recently, farmers inspected the yield trial fields at the University's Institute of Research and Training (IRT), supervised by Professor Dr. S. M. Harun-Or-Rashid, Director of Food Science and Nutrition Department, and Associate Professor and Researcher Dr. Anwara Aktar Khatoon. They were accompanied by lecturer Mr. Raihanul Haque from the Soil Science Department and Dr. M. Gaussur Rahman from the Pathology and Parasitology Department along with students engaged in farming research activities. Observers were impressed by the high yield of tomatoes without the use of chemical pesticides and hormones and interacted with the farmers.

This time, farmers in Chirirbandar Upazila of Dinajpur district have successfully cultivated tomatoes using bacteria as a means of spraying. Mr. Nurul Islam Shah, a farmer from the area, expressed satisfaction with the beautiful tomatoes produced.

Despite applying pesticides several times a week, farmers in neighboring plots still encountered pests that damaged the plants. In comparison, using bacteria has resulted in much better yields for us. Even though it's the winter crop season, this variety of tomatoes is being cultivated, and it will be stable for another two months. Besides tomatoes, I have also used bacteria in my chili fields and achieved very good yields. I have previously grown chilies, but never had such good yields.

Another farmer, Absar Ali, from Sadar Upazila in Dinajpur, has also achieved promising yields through similar methods and is confident about using this technique for tomato cultivation in the future.

Professor Dr. S. M. Harun-or-Rashid, Director of the Institute of Research and Training (IRT), stated that Dr. Azizul Haque has been conducting research on the application of bacteria for tomato cultivation successfully for a long time. His research will play a significant role in the country's agricultural development. Just as farmers are achieving high yields, consumers will also get pesticide-free produce, ensuring health benefits.

Associate Professor and researcher Dr. Anwara Aktar Khatoon from the Department of Food Science and Nutrition said that tomatoes grown without chemical pesticides are not only healthy but also rich in nutrients.

These tomatoes produced through the application of bacteria can be easily preserved for a long time. Nutrient-rich products can be processed from these tomatoes. I hope for continued success in the outcome of this research.

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