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Sugar Producer Price Drops 9 Percent

June 17, 2014

The producer price for sugar has dropped by 9 percent to $574 per tonne from $627,67 last year mainly due to decline in value of the commodity on the international market, an official has said.

Commercial Sugarcane Producers Association of Zimbabwe vice chairperson Mr Tawanda Mafurutu told New Ziana that the producer price of raw sugar was largely determined on the global market and was subject to periodical review.

"Sugarcane growers are currently being paid $574 per tonne for now but the price can go up or down as the season progresses depending on what is happening worldwide," he said.

"Last year the price declined towards the end of the selling season.

"We started at $627 per tonne and ended at $572.

"We hope that this year the price will firm for us to get more profit," he added.

The price of raw sugar in Zimbabwe for the 2013 marketing season dropped to US$627, 67 per tonne from US$700 the previous year owing to massive production of the crop in some parts of the world, hence pushing prices down.

Sugarcane growers in the Lowveld are this year anticipating an upsurge in production spurred by heavy rains received in the 2013-14 cropping season.

Growth in sugarcane yield is also driven by the increase in area planted from 44 818 hectares in the 2012/ 13 season to 50 000 hectares in the 2013 /14 season.

According to the African Development Bank Monthly Economic Review (January), sugarcane production in the Southern African country for the 2013 /14 cropping season was projected to grow 9 percent from the 2011 /12 season yield to 4 550 000 metric tonnes.

Harvesting of sugarcane in Zimbabwe started on April 1 this year and is likely to continue until December.

Sugarcane is grown on a commercial scale in the south-eastern parts of the country, which include Chisumbanje in Manicaland province and Chiredzi in Masvingo province where more land is set to be availed soon following completion of the Tokwe-Mukosi Dam.

Prior to the land reform programme in early 2 000, sugarcane production was a monopoly of Tongaat Hullet, a South African company that still controls the milling and marketing of the crop in the country.

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Source: AllAfrica

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