The soil and climate of Nilphamari are very suitable for tea cultivation. In hilly areas, leaf lifting is possible after three years of transplanting whereas the leaves are transplanted after one and half to two years of transplanting in Nilphamari.
Tea cultivation started in Kishoreganj upazila of Nilphamari by planting 2,000 saplings on only 30 acres of land in 2014. Later, saplings were planted in three and a half acres of fallow land of Kishoreganj Upazila Parishad. As a result, the fallow lands of the Upazila Chattar have been turned into a two-leaf bud crop tea garden. After experimental success in tea cultivation, commercial production began. A privately owned company first started tea cultivation on 1.5 acres of land in June 2015.
Rifat Hasan, manager of the Bahagili tea garden of the company, said, "We started tea cultivation on a small scale on the advice of the Upazila administration. Then it is seen that tea cultivation was more profitable than potato or maize cultivation. We now cultivate tea on 35 acres of land. In the first phase of the 6-acre garden, one lakh 65 thousand kg of leaves have been sold so far and about 23 lakh Taka has been found."
About 60-60 male and female workers are working in these tea gardens every day. As a result, those families have felt the touch of economic development.
Momina Khatun, a woman worker at the Mainakuri tea garden, said, "I am paid more to work in the tea garden than in other places. With this money I am able to provide education expenses for my children and I am spending my days happily with my family."
---Raja Ahmed, Nilphamari
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