Around 200 families in Shoilmari village in Chuadanga Sadar upazila have been passing busy days making fishing traps with bamboo and have set a sales target of Tk30 lakh in this monsoon.
In the wake of the rising demand, men, women, children, and elders in the village are making bamboo traps from dawn to dusk. Family members said about Tk2 lakh worth of traps were sold every week.
As the quality is good, there is a huge demand for traps made in the village in different districts including Meherpur, Jashore, Khulna, etc.
Due to lockdown and various restrictions imposed last year by the government, the sales of bamboo traps were less than Tk20 lakh.
Fishing traps artisans said many individuals and traders bought traps from them. The wholesale price per trap is Tk220-260 while the retail price is Tk250-300.
A bamboo trap is made of bamboo, palm tree branch and nylon string. It takes a week for two artisans to make three to four traps.
Up to 15 traps can be made from one bamboo which costs Tk200-250. Besides, one trap requires one piece of a palm tree branch that costs Tk30 and some nylon strings costing Tk5-7.
The families have become financially self-sufficient by selling fishing traps. Besides, they work in the cottage industry for half of the year. Sadar upazila administration said they would provide all kinds of assistance to them.
Bamboo fishing trap artisan Moina Khatun said making traps requires labour, time and care. So, female members of the families also work in making traps.
They are happy that they can contribute to the family's earnings.
First, palm tree branches are soaked in water. Later, yarn is made from fibre extracted from the branch. Bamboo sticks are made by cutting bamboo into several small pieces. Finally, a trap is made by tying the sticks with nylon string and yarn.
Hashem Ali from Jashore has bought 20 fishing traps from Shoilmari village for fishing in the field next to his house. He said the quality of fishing traps was very good and the prices were affordable.
Chuadanga Begumpur union parishad chairman Md Ali Hossain Joarddar said all kinds of cooperation was provided by the upazila administration and the union parishad. They are provided food and money when required.
Chuadanga Sadar upazila chairman Ashadul Haque Biswas said two Hindu families in Shoilmari village started making bamboo fishing traps about 70 years ago. Locals learnt it from them.
He said he would do everything to keep the industry running.