The dreams of Shariatpur poultry farmers now extend beyond Padma Bridge

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For poultry farmers in Shariatpur, the Padma Bridge which opened on June 25 is a dream of over 6.15 km.

They will no longer be divided and ruled by a changing and often treacherous river.

Even though the district is not too far from Dhaka, the Padma River has been a major geographic divide for its poultry farmers.

Bride Padma has opened markets in Dhaka and other parts of the country to farmers and growers in Shariatpur, linked by Munshiganj to the north, Barisal to the south, Chandpur to the east and Madaripur to the west.

As the bridge is expected to bring regional agriculture and small businesses to the main supply chain, Shariatpur traders of perishables and produce such as vegetables, fish and poultry hope to benefit from longer travel time short and better prices.

Hossain Ali, a poultry farmer from Shariatpur, will no longer have to worry if his trucks catch the ferry and cross the Padma in time to reach Dhaka and other parts of the country. Halima Banu from the district will also get fair prices for her produce.

“In Shariatpur, 32,400 metric tons of chicken meat and 11.5 crores of eggs are produced annually at 1,478 poultry farms. About 6,000 people are involved in the profession,” according to the district livestock office .

Poultry traders in Shariatpur say they send truckloads of produce to Dhaka and other major cities.

They load their hens and eggs onto trucks in the evening. Trucks often could not reach Dhaka the next morning due to traffic jams at the ferry terminal. It would affect the quality of chickens and eggs. Thus, poultry traders in Shariatpur were reluctant to send chickens and eggs to Dhaka.

Traders now hope the new bridge will allow them to quickly transport chicken and eggs to the Dhaka market, adding that fresh produce will bring them more profit.

Abul Kalam Azad, Poultry Farmer from Shariatpur’s Naria, said, “We encountered difficulties in transporting poultry products to Dhaka. Many live poultry and Sonali chickens died at ferry ghat due to traffic jams.

“The opening of the Padma Bridge will bring us closer to Dhaka-based markets. Cheap transportation and lucrative fares in Dhaka markets mean more profit for us.”

Fatema Begum, another farmer from Shariatpur Sadar, said, “Poultry traders in our area have been kept away from the main market due to lack of communication infrastructure. The Padma bridge will allow us to connect much more easily to the markets of the city. .”

“More wholesalers from Dhaka will now come to our area to buy poultry products, which will help us get competitive prices.

Shariatpur District Animal Husbandry Officer Dr Subodh Kumar Das said: “The Padma Bridge would have a huge impact on the poultry industry in the region. Poultry farmers had not been able to make much profit due to lack of market access. But the bridge will change that.”

“The time needed to transport poultry products to major markets, including Dhaka, will decrease from 8-10 hours to 3.5-4 hours, which will help farmers earn higher profits and have better access to food. traditional markets.

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