…Last year’s earnings of Nu 300,000 from 400 orange trees have been eclipsed this season, as I proudly tally over Nu 400,000 from the very same orchard
By Phurpa Wangmo
The farmers of Tsirang are celebrating a flourishing orange season marked by an impressive yield and soaring prices. The air is filled with the sweet scent of oranges, and the success of this harvest extends beyond fragrant orchards to substantial financial gains for the hardworking orange growers.
Gosarling, Tsholingkhar, and Kilkorthang Gewogs are festooned with the vibrant hues of ripe oranges, creating a stunning visual testament to the abundance of this year’s harvest. Remarkably, some farmers have experienced such prosperity that they’ve managed to sell their oranges even before the official harvest period, a testament to the exceptional quality of this year’s crop.
The allure of the orange season has not only captivated the local community but has also attracted a surge of buyers, including exporters eager to capitalize on the abundant yield. The anticipation is palpable as buyers gear up to commence harvesting the citrus fruits at the end of November.
Mon Bdr. Dahal, a farmer from Gosarling, shares his delight, stating, “Last year, I earned around Nu 300,000 from over 400 orange trees. This time, I’ve already surpassed that, having earned over Nu 400,000 from the same orchard.” The financial success is not unique to him, as Karma Yuden from Tsholingkhar expresses her joy at the remarkable increase in production, saying, “My livelihood depends solely on selling oranges, and the unexpected increase in production brings me immense joy.”
Goma Devi Pokhrel from Dekiling under Kilkorthang Gewog highlights the improvement in orange sizes this season, expecting a substantial increase in income compared to the previous year.
Despite the annual challenge of fruit dropping impacting farmers’ income, this season seems resilient to such concerns. The optimism among the farmers is reinforced by the expectation of a bountiful income from this year’s citrus harvest.
The Agriculture Extension Officer of Tsholingkhar Gewog outlines proactive measures being implemented to empower local households, addressing the challenge of citrus fruit drop. “We have engaged every household in training to effectively control citrus fruit drop. As part of our long-term strategy, starting next year, we plan to launch an extensive awareness campaign. Additionally, we are in the process of facilitating agreements between farmers to provide support mechanisms, aiming to bolster and assist the farming community.” These initiatives underscore a commitment to sustainable agricultural practices.
As farmers find their way to international markets, primarily exporting to Bangladesh, the success of this season’s harvest promises not only economic gains but also serves as a testament to the resilience and prosperity of agriculture in Tsirang. The thriving orange orchards stand as a symbol of the tenacity and dedication of Tsirang’s farming community, painting a vibrant picture of agricultural success in the heart of Bhutan.