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Sugar crop in the north looking good as end of season approaches

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Posted: Wednesday, May 18, 2022. 8:37 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Information from refiners Belize Sugar Industries Limited/American Sugar Refining (BSI/ASR) suggests that the 2022 crop season continues to pass 2021 benchmarks and will result in another successful harvest despite a late start and frayed tempers among industry stakeholders.

As of May 8, 2022, 18 weeks into the crop, some 769,943 tons of cane had been ground, from which 86,681 tons of sugar had been produced.

Those figures represent increases of 14,991 tons for sugar cane milled and 7,838 tons for sugar produced over 2021 up to that point.

The percentage of sugar in the cane is up past 13 percent, and the percentage of mud reduced to under 5 percent, while the tons cane/tons sugar ratio is a solid 8.88 compared to last year’s mark of 9.58.

More than a million tonnes of cane is expected to be ground by the end of the season in late June or early July.

It is expected that the encouraging figures will play a role in the still-outstanding issue of whether a commercial agreement can be fixed between BSI/ASR and the largest cane farmers association, the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) after the most recent one expired in January. BSI/ASR’s power processing arm BELCOGEN sued the leaders of the BSCFA for the blockade that halted the start of the crop last December, but so far neither side has been speaking, at least in public, about a movement toward settling their issues.

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