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December 2, 2019

Sugarcane price

Newspost

 
December 2, 2019

Sugarcane is an important cash crop of the country. It is grown on a large area of the country. A number of sugar mills (about 90) have been established for manufacture of sugar from sugarcane grown in the country. Also, some portion of the crop is used for the production of ‘gurr’ (jaggery), especially in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Pakistan is the world fifth largest producer and 8th largest consumer of sugar. The sugar industry is the second largest agriculture based industry after textile.

Sugarcane is a long duration crop as compared to other cash crops grown in the country. It requires great skill and huge investment in the form of inputs by the farmers. And, at the end of the day, they are at the mercy of the sugar mills and are unable to get even cost of production of the crop and to have both ends meet. It merits a mention that sugarcane farmers’ concerns are largely neglected and growers are squeezed in the market place. Also, farmers are demanding a solution to three serious concerns – commencement of sugarcane crushing, minimum support price and timely payment of outstanding dues. Also, the growers who provide raw material to the second largest industry have to fight to sell their crop as seen in the delay in crushing season. It is pertinent to note that the minimum support price of sugarcane has remained a point of contention between the sugar mills and the farmers for years. The resultant sugar shortage due to confrontation between sugar mills and the farmers had badly affected the consumers and the industry. There is an urgent need to resolve the grievances of sugarcane farmers and sugar mills. The government may arrange a conference of the millers and the farmers under its auspices at an early date so as to arrive at an amicable solution.

Khan Faraz

Peshawar

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