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BSI/ASR awaiting formal response on agreement from BSCFA, issues warning on stalling start of crop season

Posted: Wednesday, November 29, 2023. 1:52 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes, Orange Walk Town: Mac Maclachlan, Country Manager for Belize Sugar Industries Limited/American Sugar Refining (BSI/ASR), says nothing official has come yet to his desk from the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) on its proposal to extend the extant Commercial Agreement by four years.

But with public pronouncements coming from the BSCFA already negative, he emphasized the favorability of the current arrangements for caneros and the obligation to themselves and wider stakeholders to get the crop started on time.

The stability and certainty the BSCFA wants, he says, comes not from seeking greater profits from the Miller, but growing the pie with more direct consumption sugar and improving existing fields to take advantage of the current high in prices.

He further warned that switching the formula for paying of Fair-trade premiums and stalling for the planned Commission of Inquiry into the Sugar Industry is not feasible and looks a lot like stalling.

The BSCFA is willing to sign a further interim agreement for one year and to allow BSI/ASR to take over the payment for Fairtrade premiums but BSI says it is certified through 2029 only as a price reporter, not payer.

More on this later.

 

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