Goa: Dharbandora sugarcane farmers demand revamp of closed sugar factory

Ponda, Goa: Following the Union government’s prohibition of producing ethanol from sugarcane juice/ sugar syrup, the Sanjivani Sugarcane Producers’ Association is urging the state government to revamp the existing sugar factory at Dharbandora and recommence sugar manufacturing, reported The Times of India.

The factory was closed in the 2019-20 period due to recurrent mechanical issues, a lack of spare parts, and a shortage of local sugarcane. Subsequently, the factory explored the possibility of transitioning into an ethanol-producing unit.

In 2021, the factory enlisted the expertise of the Deccan Sugar Technologists Association (India), Pune, to prepare a detailed project report (DPR) for ethanol production, which received government approval. However, the government faced challenges in finding a bidder for ethanol production, as mentioned by Rajendra Desai, Chairman of the association.

Since the closure of the Sanjivani Cooperative Sugar Factory, farmers have been sending their cane produce to factories in Karnataka and Maharashtra. Desai asserts that sugar production remains viable at the Dharbandora factory if the government undertakes a comprehensive revamping of the production setup. He notes that the cane crushing unit, boilers, and some major machines are still in good condition, thanks to timely maintenance conducted at the end of each crushing season.


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