Over 1.6 million tonnes of sugar cane has been crushed so far while sugar production stands at 145,875 tonnes compared to 149,571 tonnes for the same period in 2019.
FSC says sugar recoveries continue to be adversely impacted by ongoing low cane purity which has been affected by weather and continuing high levels of burnt cane deliveries compared to 2019.
It says crushing for the past week was reduced as a result of a two day shut down at all mills for the Diwali weekend.
The FSC says the cumulative crush to date remains 5% higher compared to the same period in 2019.
Meanwhile, Fiji Labour Party Leader, Mahendra Chaudhry says the total cane crushed has reduced from 3.23 million tonnes in 2006 to 1.7 million tonnes in 2019 and has also questioned what has been done to achieve the target set in 2012 to produce 4 million tonnes of cane by 2020.
Chaudhry who is also the General Secretary of the National Farmers Union has questioned how FSC plans to sustain itself as its loss was $80 million in 2019 compared to a profit of $7 million in 2006 and world sugar price hovering just over $50. He says FSC loans in 2019 were over $400 million and the organisation is now totally reliant on loans and government assistance to survive.
When questioned, FSC’s CEO Graham Clark says they are about to release the 2020 Annual Report which deals with most of these issues. Clark says he will only comment on these issues when the annual report is out.
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