Katalyst and Edge Consulting Ltd. have signed contracts to strengthen maize sector in Bangladesh on 11 December2014. In order to explore diversified use of maize that will help to broaden farmers’ sales market for their produce, Edge Consulting will conduct a study that assesses the market size and demand for maize-based starch and glucose in various industries of Bangladesh.
Edge Consulting will furthermore assist Katalyst in its efforts to promote summer maize cultivation and increase the productivity of farmers. Here, Edge will facilitate both the public and private sector to promote quality input and information on summer maize cultivation. Only 12% of total maize production comes from summer maize, the rest is grown during winter season. By increasing the production of summer maize, the existing demand-supply gap in the maize sector can be minimized to a great extent. Summer maize also is a ‘short duration’ crop that can be cultivated at a lower cost compared to that of winter maize. As such, summer maize is a profitable cash crop for farmers that can be grown after winter crops such as potato or mustard.
At present, maize farmers mostly face problems related to access to information, suitable seed varieties and post-harvest technology. Farmers are not familiar with ideal cultivation techniques and seed varieties which eventually result in lower than optimum yield. Katalyst is conducting several interventions in the maize sector to help maize farmers realize their full potential.