21 May 2013

Renewed optimism at Fiji Sugar Cane Growers Council

1:50 pm on 21 May 2013

The Fiji Sugar Cane Growers Council says it believes the embattled industry has turned the corner and hopes that within nine years, it will exceed previous record production levels.

Last week the industry announced cane growers were this year in line for a record payout - 60 percent above what they earned three years ago.

It comes after years of decline which has seen many farmers abandon the industry causing production to plummet.

But the acting chairman of the Cane Growers Council, Sundresh Chetty, says, with signficant input from the government, the confidence of the growers is being restored, while land lease issues are being sorted out.

"All the industry stakeholders are working together. We have formulated a Sugar Industry Action Plan which is being implemented from the 2013 season, going forward with the 2013 season and we are sure that with the full implementation of the Sugar Industry Action Plan we will be able to get back to our glory days."

Sundresh Chetty says the Action Plan is aiming for productions levels of five million tons of cane by 2022 - about three times the current production.