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Dec 27, 2012

Sweet Sugar Crop says B.S.I.

While life at the court continues to be dreary, farmers who live near Sugar City are forecasting a bright start to 2013. Sugar production at the Belize Sugar Industry’s Tower Hill Factory has increased considerably when compared to last year’s crop.  The current yield, according to factory manager John Gillett, is exceptional, resulting in a greater output of sugar during this season.  While that improvement may not as yet be attributed to a higher demand for cane, the factory is producing upwards of seven thousand tons of sugar daily. It is also anticipated that there will be marked increases in the amount of sugar cane brought to the factory for production in the seasons ahead since B.S.I.’s parent company, American Sugar Refining, has indicated a need for optimization. News Five spoke to the Factory Manager via phone about the improved season.

 

John Gillett

Via Phone: John Gillett, Factory Manager, B.S.I.

“We have started off and are having an excellent crop so far.  Up to the Christmas break we have milled a hundred and sixty-three thousand tons of cane, compared to one hundred and twenty-three thousand for last year and we milled that at a rate of three hundred and three tons an hour, as compared to two hundred and sixty-two tons for last year.  The cane quality is a little better than it is last year so we expect to get somewhere between last year and the previous year.  The mud percent cane is down from what it was last year.  It’s running at four point two-six percent, as compared to five point nine-one.  So we could say we’re getting about a forty percent reduction overall.  The tons, cane per tons of sugar ratio is running presently at ten point seven-two, as compared to eleven point two-six per last year.  And the overall efficiency, meaning a combination of the boiling house and the milling operation is running higher than last year, ninety-three point four-nine, as compared to ninety-three point zero-five.  The overall time efficiency, meaning the total time that the factory has milled, as compared to the time available, that is running at seventy-eight percent, as compared to seventy percent for the previous year.  We have made fifteen thousand, two hundred tons of sugar, as compared to ten thousand, nine hundred for last year.  So, all in all I would say that we have been having an excellent crop.  We set out, our quota, our daily cane quota is being set around seven thousand tons per day.  At a minimum, most of the days quota has been issued well in excess of seven thousand tons and the factory is milling well over seven thousand tons at present.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“Is this reflective of the increase in quota that was mentioned at the point where ASR was assuming B.S.I.?”

 

John Gillett

“No.  That has nothing to do with, that has nothing to do with that.  The total available cane, we’re still looking at one point one million tons of cane.  What you’re referring to is the total amount of cane that will come into production in the ensuing years.  We expect that level to go up to about one point four, one point five million tons eventually and then we hope to reach the two million tons a few years after.  But for right now, the way the factory has been maintained and the excellent time efficiency that the factory is running at and that is giving us these results.”

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