Cotton production in Farah province in Afghanistan has increased by 30 percent this harvest compared to last year, local officials said.
Abdul Momin Faisal, director of agriculture, irrigation, and livestock, said: “This year, cotton was cultivated on 80 hectares of land; two tons of cotton was harvested from a hectare.”
Faisal stated that a total of 160 tons of cotton was harvested in the province, showing a 30 percent increase compared to last year.
He added that residents have turned to cultivate cotton instead of poppies in the province, as cotton cultivation is easier than poppies.
Faisal added that not only cotton but also all agricultural produce have increased in Farah this year.
A number of farmers said: “Poppy cultivation has been prohibited therefore we turned to cultivating cotton instead.” They also said their income has increased.
Mansoor, a farmer, said that the cultivation of poppies in Farah resulted in a lot of misery for people as many became addicted to drugs.
He urged farmers to avoid cultivating poppies and to instead start planting other produce, including cotton.
Abdul Matin, another farmer in Farah, said: “I turned to cultivate cotton instead of poppies because it costs less and we spent 10,000 Afghani per acre of land and in return, it has a higher profit. We also urge other farmers not to cultivate poppies anymore.”
Agriculture is the primary source of income for people in Farah province. In the past, they mainly cultivated cucumbers, watermelons, and cotton across the province.