Uttar Pradesh: Farmers hope for big hike in sugarcane purchase price in poll year

New Delhi: Concerns are mounting among both farmers and millers in Uttar Pradesh as the state government delays the declaration of the state-advised price (SAP) for sugarcane for the 2023-24 season, despite the crushing season having commenced in October, reported The Indian Express.

“The announcement is supposed to be made before October when mills start crushing the new cane harvested by farmers. But it’s now January, and we still don’t know what price farmers will get from mills for their current season’s crop,” said V M Singh, convenor of the Rashtriya Kisan Mazdoor Sangathan.

Farmer unions are advocating for a significant increase in the cane SAP.

This contrasts with the previous governments led by SP’s Akhilesh Yadav and BSP’s Mayawati, who saw higher increases in cane prices during their tenures.

With the Lok Sabha elections scheduled for April-May, there is an expectation of a substantial rise in SAP this time. Farmers cite rising input costs, reduced per-acre cane yields due to red rot fungal disease, and increased labor charges to support their demand for a higher SAP.

However, millers are also expressing concern over the delay in announcing the SAP, fearing the diversion of cane to gur (jaggery) and khandsari (cottage sugar) units. These alternative sweetener makers are offering higher prices for cane (Rs 360-400/ quintal) compared to the current SAP of Rs 340-350 being paid by mills.


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