SAR-I-PUL (Pajhwok): A number of livestock owners say the recent snowfall has covered all pastures in northern Sar-i-Pul province and their animals are at risk of starvation.
Hamza, a resident of Zaka Afghania area, said: “Due to the snowfall and the cold weather in Sar-i-Pul, we cannot use postures for our animals. Snow has blanketed the meadows and our animals are facing starvation.”
He recalled the price of a 70-kilogram bag of straw was about 500 afghanis last month. But after the recent whiteout, the rate has surged to 1,000 afghanis.
Munawar, a farmer from Sayad district, also said: “We didn’t think the winter would be this cold and full of snow. We did not store much of straw or other feeds for animals. Unfortunately, over the last 20 days, the weather has become cold and the snow has covered the ground.”
Mohammad Shah, another grower from Syedabad area, also complained his cattle could not make use of snow-covered pastures.
He urged the government to save their livestock from starvation and help them with feed supplies.
Meanwhile, Agriculture Director Abdul Qadir Wahdat acknowledged complaints from farmers and said his department was striving to support livestock owners.
He added: “The price of a bag of straw in the market has increased from 500 afs to 1,000 afs. We have shared this problem with the Ministry of Agriculture. At the same time, we have also asked aid organisations for help.”