Pending cane dues: Sugarcane farmers selling cane to jaggery units

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Bijnor, Uttar Pradesh: Sugar mills in Uttar Pradesh are all set to commence crushing season, but the pending sugarcane dues have not been paid yet.

According to the news report published in The Times of India, due to pending cane dues, the sugarcane farmers now prefer to sell their cane to the jaggery units (Kolhus) instead of sugar mills.

The Kolhus pay farmers Rs 230-250 per quintal whereas mills pay them more as per state advised price (SAP). The mills are yet to start operations but the Kolhus have started operations.

As many as 119 sugar mills in the Uttar Pradesh are operating this year and around 40 lakh cane farmers are involved in cane farming in the state.
According to the media reports, the sugar mills are yet to pay Rs 8,447 crore to the cane farmers for the previous season that ended on September 30. Millers attribute lockdown effect and delay in subsidy payments by the government to the delay in sugarcane payment.

As per TOI, Sugarcane farmer Jitendra Kumar from Madhusudanpur said, “We are not getting our dues from sugar mills even after completing one year of crushing. Sugar mills are yet to commence operations, while kolhus are crushing cane from September. In such desperate conditions, farmers are being compelled to sell their produce at low rates to kolhu owners.”

Yashpal Singh, district cane officer said, “We have already issued instructions to the sugar mills to clear the pending cane arrears on a priority basis.”

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