10 Jan 2011

Flooding in Fiji a major blow for sugar cane farms

4:28 pm on 10 January 2011

Flooding in the north west part of Viti Levu has affected many sugar cane farms in low lying areas.

Floods of up to half a metre high have already affected rural parts of Tavua, Ba, and Rakiraki.

The CEO of Tavua Town Council Jasuman Khan says the flooding is a major blow for affected farms.

"Well we feel sorry for the farmers, because most of them, even tho they've planted cane for next year, unless the water resides the cane will get rotten."

Tavua sugar cane farmer Yogendra Khand has 25 acres of sugar cane fields affected by the heavy rain and flooding.

Mr Khand says up to 80 tonnes of his sugar cane crop was left out and wasn't able to make it to the mill and is probably ruined.

He's advising other affected farmers to consider planting other cash crops to supplement their incomes.

I feel that farmers have struggled this year to get their canes to the mills because the mill has had some problems in operations, so the farmers have struggled. If this is the case, then farmers can move to cash crops where they can earn more money, like watermelon, planting of beans and other things.