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Improved wheat seeds distributed in Samangan.

Improved wheat seeds and chemical fertilizers were distributed to farmers on Sunday in the northern province of Samangan, officials said. Eighty-seven tonnes of improved wheat seeds, the same amount of Di-ammonium Phosphate (DAP), a fertilizer, and 176 tonnes of urea, provided by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), are to be given to 1,750 farmers in Roy Do Aab district, deputy director of the agriculture, irrigation and livestock department, Noor Muhammad, told Pajhwok Afghan News. The purpose of the better seeds and fertilizer was to increase crop production and cultivate hardier and more improved seeds, he said. The local wheat seed varieties which have been cultivated in the area over the past half century can be easily infected by diseases and attacked by pests and are no longer as productive as they once were, he added. He urged farmers who received the improved seeds to grow them in their fields so that other farmers would be able to benefit from the next year. Each farmer with between 1 acres to 5 acres of land would receive 50 kilograms of seed and the same amount of DAP and 100 kg of urea, all for 1,500 afghanis, 65 percent less than market price, he added. "If the improved seeds adapt to the cold weather, I would plant all of my fields with the improved wheat and give the rest to other farmers," a farmer of the district, 34, Noorul Hoda, said. "I have 5.5 acres of land, but the seed and fertilizers I received are sufficient for only once acre of land," he added. There are more than 9.67 million acres of irrigated land and 40,000 acres of land which is naturally irrigated by rain in the district. The aid is enough only for 1,750 acres of land, a resident of the district, Mullah Mostaan, said. The aid was allocated by the Ministry of Agriculture. Currently it can not be increased, but in spring, the rest of the farmers would receive improved seeds, officials of the agriculture department said

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Publication:Pajhwok Afghan News (Kabul, Afghanistan)
Date:Nov 21, 2010
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