The Afghan Ministry of Agriculture Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL) has revealed that the potato harvest in the Bamyan Province would reach up to 370,000 tons this year.
Agriculture Head of Bamyan Abdul Wahab Mohammadi said that 17,000-18,000 hectares of lands were cultivating potato in Bamyan province annually, but unfortunately, the harvest was decreased due to drought.
This year, rainfall and water was quite good and agriculture programs were also implemented in best manner, in which potato harvest was much more this time, he added.
Although, harvest collecting is not ended yet, but based on pre-assessment, we expect 370,000 tons of potato would be produced in the province, he added.
He stated that construction of small and big cold warehouses for potato are other steps for supporting potato harvest in the province.
About 3,600 cold stores were constructed in the past five years in the Bamyan province, where each store has the capacity of 20 tons of potato, he noted.
He said the stores are not enough, as only 20 percent of potato would be stored in the constructed warehouses.
He elaborated that currently 36 potato varieties have been cultivated in Mullah Ghulam farms and the farmers have access to 14 potato varietes for commercial cultivation in the province.
Potato cultivation has increased with the support of MAIL in Bamyan and a number of farmers used to grow potato, he added.
In the central area of Bamyan, Yakawlang and Shibar are the areas, which have the highest potato harvests, he asserted.
According to him, 90 percent of Bamyan potato exports to other provinces of the country and around 5,000 farmers are engaged in cultivating potatoes.
Afghanistan needs to 1.1-2 million tons potato annually, with 600.000 tons produced inside the country.
Wahab Mohammadi said 250,000 tons of potato were produced in 33 provinces. But Bamyan produces over 250,000 tons just by itself, more than the production in the 33 other provinces of Afghanistan combined, he underlined.