The harvesting of Boro starts in April and continues till June. This year, the country was locked down during that period, and the farmers were facing a dire situation, as they could not find enough labour to harvest the paddy. Besides, labourers were not able to move from one district to another. To address the issue, the prime minister had declared that the farmers should continue their work at any cost, to ensure a steady supply of food, and the government would support the farmers financially by providing subsidy for harvesting machinery.
ACI Motors played the most pivotal role in that period, as they are the largest distributor of harvesting machinery in Bangladesh. ACI Motors has 12 years of experience in working with harvesting technology. During the coronavirus pandemic (April-June), ACI Motors distributed more than 700 combine harvesters across the country. Among these delivered harvesters, 616 were Yanmar Combine Harvesters. Consequently, these harvesters reached every possible corner of the country covering more than 400 upazillas of 58 districts.
All the members of ACI Motors were active during the whole harvesting season, and for their relentless effort, the harvesting of Boro was successfully completed. Special credit goes to the sales and service team of ACI Motors who risked their lives to deliver the harvesters and provide services while working in the field. The service team was active almost 18 hours a day, ensuring proper operational training by the driving experts to make work easier for the customers. All of these harvesters were delivered by ACI at the customer point. This year, the percentage of the paddy loss in the Haor areas was minimum, thanks to team ACI Motors, without them this wouldn't be possible. Also, ACI Motors administers the biggest promotional campaigns to reach the maximum number of people. They used every medium, especially digital platform, to promote combine harvester across the country.
It takes Tk 9,000 to Tk 10,000 to harvest one acre of paddy traditionally. The cost of the harvester is about half, Tk 5000. About 750 harvesters saved about Tk 120 crore in this case. Apart from this, 12 percent of the crop is wasted by traditionally cutting paddy, but with the harvester, waste falls to less than 5 percent. In this case, the value of the rice that is saved is Tk 42 crore.
We would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the initiatives taken by the Government for commencing the subsidy project just at the proper time and ensuring the field level execution.