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7145 Slaughterhouse Road

Belize City, Belize Central America

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Sugar crop sees a not so sweet start

The sugar crop is about five weeks into its season and sugar cane farmers are already not too happy. Farmers called into our news studio today saying that their cane is not being milled on schedule. According to the farmers, they normally make at least one delivery to the factory per day from Sunday to Sunday. They claim that since the start of the crop, they have only been able to make as much as four deliveries per week. Naturally, they are frustrated, especially, they say, since their leaders have not addressed the matter. We spoke with Sugar Cane Farmers Relations Officer at BSI, Olivia Avilez who confirmed that the factory has experienced some setbacks.

Olivia Aviles Sugarcane Farmers Relations Officer, BSI/ASR: “We have done some investments on equipment in the factory so we are starting that at this club with new equipment and recently we were testing that out, trouble shooting and yes we have had some problems , some troubleshooting problems with this new equipment while bring it online and on stream fully and honestly we can’t know where the issues will arise until you put cane through the factory so we have had some experiences of low milling to fix different problems. Those problems have been sorted out and we also had issues with mud in the mill because as you know it rains and obviously the cane will come with mud in it and it’s nobody’s fault really. It is the weather condition and so when mud comes in we have to deal with that but we have been having some trouble since the start of crop but those have been sorted out and milling is normal.”

Dalila Ical: “ So you are saying that then these equipments could not be tested in the off crop season or session.”

Olivia Aviles Sugarcane Farmers Relations Officer, BSI/ASR: “Well you will only know where the issues are when you put cane through the factory. We have gone back to normal. We have been building quite well since last week.”

Dalilah Ical: “ So it can’t be classified as a loss this time.”

Olivia Aviles Sugarcane Farmers Relations Officer, BSI/ASR: “No at this time no, we are behind schedule of 33 thousand tons of cane and if you calculate that by 10,000 per day that is about 4 days of grinding.

Alvilez says that they met with the leaders of the three associations to explain the situation two Fridays ago.

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