SUNBIZ

FSC Confident Of No Standover Cane In Macuata Province After Mill Termination: Christopher

  There will be no possibility of standover sugarcane in Macuata Province says Fiji Sugar Corporation Labasa mill general manager, Karia Christopher. Mr Christopher said farmers and gangs are aware
25 Oct 2016 12:00
FSC Confident Of No Standover Cane In Macuata Province After Mill Termination: Christopher
Farmers and gangs are aware that the Fiji Sugar Industry Tribunal has announced the termination date of the 2016 crushing season for Labasa mill for November 6.

 

There will be no possibility of standover sugarcane in Macuata Province says Fiji Sugar Corporation Labasa mill general manager, Karia Christopher.

Mr Christopher said farmers and gangs are aware that the Fiji Sugar Industry Tribunal has announced the termination date of the 2016 crushing season for Labasa mill for November 6.

“So far 616,000 tonnes of cane has been crushed,” Mr Christopher said.

“By looking at the current conditions, I believe there will not be any standover cane. The mill is operating as normal.”

National Farmers Union president Surendra Lal said there might be considerable standover cane because of recent wet weather conditions.

“Farmers are struggling as in some places, the mechanical harvesters cannot be used while some are facing labour shortage,” Mr Lal said.

“Labour shortage is an ongoing usual concern and something needs to be done.

“With regards to the closure of the mill, I am aware that farmers know that only a few days remain for them to deliver cane to the mill.

“If farmers need an extension, we will surely make a request to FSC.”

Mr Lal said a few farmers have approached him-face to face and via phone calls inquiring whether there would be a grace payment to assist them in their Diwali celebration.

“There are many farmers who have been affected by Tropical Cyclone Winston while some have zero balance after numerous deductions,” Mr Lal said.

“These farmers are hoping if some kind of grace payment can be given,” Mr Lal said.

Fiji Sugar Corporation acting chief executive Mika Biukoto said he cannot comment on grace payment.

He said there are ongoing discussions taking place by the Sugar Cane Growers Council chief executive Sundresh Chetty with the relevant authorities.

When Fiji Sun contacted Mr Chetty yesterday, he said he cannot comment on this yet.

EDITED BY: RACHNA LAL

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