Chimi Demai  | Tsirang  

Despite the nationwide lockdown, agricultural officials and commercial aggregators in Dagana are busy collecting vegetables from the gewogs and delivering them to other dzongkhags.

To ease vegetable shortages in the capital, Dagana agriculture sector delivered about two metric tonnes of vegetables yesterday.

The sector supplied 790 kilograms (kg) of cauliflower, 215kg of small chillies, 2kg of bunching onion and about 20kg of tomato, among others from Tsendagang, Kana, Larjab, Khebisa and Tsangkha gewogs.

Shortly after the department of agriculture issued a directive on December 24, identified commercial aggregators and field officials collected vegetables in the gewogs.

Given the movement restrictions, only one vehicle from a gewog is permitted once a week for delivery.

The drivers were tested for Covid-19 prior to the movement.

Other gewogs like Goshi, Tashiding and Drujeygang also have potential to deliver vegetables according to agriculture officials.  Tsendagang is expecting a bountiful harvest of green chillies next month.

The officials and aggregators said that unclear directives from the agriculture department and difficulty in availing vehicle movement permits were some of the challenges on the first day of delivery.

The official, however, said that such shortcomings were inevitable given the current situation. “Things are expected to improve with time.”

Dagana has 17 local aggregators identified for collection and delivery of vegetables during the lockdown.

Meanwhile, Tsirang livestock sector supplied 384 cartons of eggs, 2500 balls of cheese and 50kg of butter to Bhutan Livestock Development Corporation Limited in Thimphu yesterday.

Two hundred cartons of eggs would be supplied to Punakha today. Tsirang produces about 900 cartons of eggs in a week.

The dzongkhag agriculture sector also supplied three bolero pickup truckloads of vegetables from Gosarling, Barshong and Mendrelgang gewogs to Thimphu yesterday.

Two DCM and a bolero pickup truckloads of vegetables from Rangthangling gewog would be sent to Thimphu today.