Fiji: Sugar mills face sugarcane supply issue

According to the Chief Executive, Bhan Pratap Singh, despite ongoing efforts to improve the sugar industry, the Fiji Sugar Corporation faces substantial challenges with cane supply during the crushing season.

Singh said that the Labasa Sugar Mill, although capable of continuous operation, must shut down on Sundays due to inadequate cane supply. The situation at the Lautoka Sugar Mill is even more concerning, with a daily shortage of cane for at least one shift.

“Lautoka Mill faces a serious cane supply issue,” says Singh. “We operate three shifts almost every day, but there’s not enough cane for one shift. We’re transferring cane from Rarawai Mill to Lautoka Mill, which poses a serious challenge. It’s largely due to the availability of harvesters, labor, and the growers’ initiatives.”

The shortfall in cane supply significantly impacts operational costs, Singh highlights. The FSC has plans in place to promptly address mill breakdowns, with major breakdowns typically lasting about eight hours and smaller ones lasting between two and four hours.


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