With sugar factory gone, cane growers find alternative in jaggery instead of sugar

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Mangaluru: Brahmavar sugar mill is closed for many years, so the cane growers dependent on the mills are disappointed. As the mill is closed, the sugarcane producing farmers from the region were in distress all these days due to lack of market for the produce. The mill was shut down in 2004.

The disappointed farmers from Udupi district are turning to jaggery production as they are left with no choice after the closure of mill to various reasons.

Umesh Shetty, member of Udupi Jilla Raitha Sangha said, “After mill failed to reopen, we were disappointed initially. But we decided to find out way seeing standing crop in 8-acre land. I constructed ‘Alemane’ (jaggery making unit) and started production of jaggery instead of letting the crop dry.”

The cost of setting up of Alemane is Rs 5.5 lakh. Another farmer Ramchandra Bhat also joined Shetty in jaggery making. “The job is tedious and difficult. We are producing 10 to 12 boxes of jaggery every day. We expect to increase production day by day,” he said. Sharath Kumar Shetty, Kundapur APMC president, has promised him to make arrangements to sell his jaggery.

Home Minister Basavraj Bomma said that we are planning to revive the Brahmavar Sugar mill and will study the matters related to it. Talking to the media, Bommai said that he would have to do a detailed study of the condition of the factory before planning its revival.

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