Pune: Cane farmers expecting good returns for their produce have to wait for their cane bills this season also as the sugar mills are delaying payments. In Maharashtra, out of 113 sugar mills that have taken cane crushing this season, only 38 have paid 100 per cent FRP to farmers. According to the media reports, as of December 31, 2019, of the Rs 1,771.82 crore that mills had to pay to farmers as per the Fair and Remunerative Price (FRP) for cane purchased, only Rs 1,037.13 crore has been paid so far, leading to arrears of Rs 734.69 crore.
Crushing season in Maharashtra commenced late this year. Sugar mills in Maharashtra officially kick-started sugarcane crushing season on November 22 after they got permission from state Governor BS Koshyari in the absence of a functional state government. It is expected that most of the mills will finish crushing by January end this year.
Sugar production in Maharashtra is down in the season 2019-2020 as the state had been gripped with drought and flood. According to the reports, three sugar mills have closed their crushing operations in this season due to scarcity of sugarcane and cane harvester.
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