Surkhet, Dec 30: Although around 87. 88 per cent of the total population in the district is involved in farming, only 15 per cent produces adequate food to last throughout the year, a statistics unviels. Although the district saw a rise in the number of farming family members in the last decade, increasing from 48,314 to 56,571, the food production has however decreased, owing to the shrinking of the arable land and the lack of skilled human resources, according to the latest National Agriculture Census. Out of the remaining 85 per cent of the farmers, some 46 per cent grow food crops producing food that lasts up to four to six months in a year while 21 per cent of famrer familes produc food lasting up to eight to nine months a year.The district with some 27,610.7 hectares of arbale land in use also has seen a shrink, standing at some 27,241.3 hectares now.
Production of vegetables, legumes and cash crops has also remarkably decreased, shared Abadesh Kumar Shukla, Chief of the District Statistics Office, Surkhet, adding that around 38 per cent of the farmers have to walk for more than two hours to avail the agriculture services or to sell their produce.The district has also seen an increment in the number of farmers using hybrid rice seeds and opting for fertilizers in a decade, standing at 18.31 per cent and 18.54 per cent from 13.68 per cent and 17.51 per cent, respectively.