Export Impact For Good

Countries / Territories

Country Profile Bangladesh



    Situated in South Asia, Bangladesh has a total area of 144,000 km2. Bangladesh is bordered in the West, North, and East by India, on the South East by Myanmar (Burma), and on the South by the Bay of Bengal, with a total boundary length of 4,246 km2. Bangladesh has a tropical monsoon climate.

    Agricultural sector

    Agriculture is one of the largest sectors of the economy. It comprises 20% of the country's GDP, whilst employing 60% of the total labour force. Major agricultural products include cotton, rice, jute, tea, wheat, cane, oilseeds, potatoes, beef, milk, poultry, tobacco, pulses, spices, and fruit (FAOSTAT, 2005-2006). Rice is produced on 60% of all cropped land in Bangladesh. Jute is the main cash crop of Bangladesh, it produces about one-quarter of the total jute supply of the world. The combined total exports of jute and jute products represents 13-15% of Bangladesh's annual export earnings. The fishery sector has also an important role in the economy of Bangladesh, and it has grown notably in the last years. The land is fertile, but yields are usually low due to a lack of capital for input. The land use is divided as follows: arable land 55%, permanent crops 3%, others 42% (CIA, 2007).

    Brief overview of organic farming

    The organic sector in Bangladesh emerged in 1988. By 2006, Bangladesh became the second country in Asia with total hectares of land under organic management. The total land under organic cultivation is estimated  to be about  177,700 hectares, accounting for approximately 2% of the total agricultural area. In 2002, 100 organic farms were operating in Bangladesh (IFOAM & FiBL, 2006). There is also the practice of Organic shrimp farming in Bangladesh.

    Brief overview of key organic products

    Certified organic produce from Bangladesh includes tea, shrimps, cotton, and rice. These products are mainly exported. So far, there is no evidence of a domestic market for organic products.

    The network

    A grassroots initiative, called Nayakrishi Andolon (New Agriculture Movement) began in 1988 with the support of the UBINIG (Policy Research for Development Alternatives). The aim of the movement was to create a community-based work, which was organic in nature. They intended to incorporate traditional knowledge with newer scientific innovations suitable for both farmers and the environment. According to the IDRC, there are presently more than 2000 farmers all over Bangladesh engaged in Nayakrishi agriculture.

    5/3 Barabo Mahanpur, Ring Road, Shaymoli
    Dhake - 1207, Bangladesh
    Tel: +880 811 1465
    Fax: +880 811 3065
    E-mail: ubinig(at)citecho.net
    Website: http://www.ubinig.org/ 

    Forum for Regenerative Agriculture Movement
    3/11, Block-D, Lalmatia, Dhaka-1207
    Tel: +880 2 812 6230
    E-mail: foram(at)bdonline.com
    Website: http://www.infobridge.org/asp/organisation_view.asp?organisationID=21


    - CIA FactBook, 31.05.07

    - FAO, 26.10.2006: Key Statistics of Food and Agriculture External Trade. Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Statistics Division.
    http://www.fao.org/es/ess/toptrade/trade.asp?dir=exp&country=3&ryear=2004 and  http://www.fao.org/es/ess/top/country.html?lang=en 

    - FAO, 26.10.2006: Organic Agriculture and Genetic Resources For Food and Agriculture.

    - FAO Statistical Year Book, (2005-06)

    - IFOAM & FiBL (2006): The World of Organic Agriculture. Statistics and Emerging Trends 2006. International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM), Bonn & Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FIBL, Frick, pp. 108-117.

    - http://www.bangladeshgov.org/moa/moa.html

    - http://www.new-agri.co.uk/00-6/countryp.html 

    - http://www.un.int/bangladesh/gen/country.htm