Flood-hit cane growers claim sugar mills refuse to buy sugarcane

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Bengaluru: The struggle for flood-affected cane growers is refusing to die down as they claim that sugar mills are not taking their cane for crushing.

The sugar mills are not taking cane produced by farmers from North Karnataka area that was hit by floods including Belgavi, Bagalkot and Gadag districts stating that the cane is of poor quality.

Subhash Siraguru, a farmer leader from Bagalkot said, “We are into the second month of the harvest season, but no mill has shown interest in purchasing our cane. They say it is of low quality because it was affected by floodwaters.”

“There is no point in crushing cane grown in these areas as there is no sugar content in the crop,” said a miller.

According to mill owners, they are purchasing crops from flood-affected regions and are rejecting crops that are completely damaged.

Sangamesh Nirani of Nirani Sugars, Mudhol said, “We are aware of the farmers’ problems. We are purchasing sugarcane from flood-affected areas as per our capacity. But it’s difficult for mills to purchase a cane that has no sugar yield.”

“We know that the quality of sugarcane crop has been reduced. We are expecting mills to pay less than what they pay for the quality crop,” said another farmer.

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