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Nov 29, 2023

B.S.I. to Introduce AgGrowPro to Cañeros in the North

On Thursday, the Belize Sugar Industries Limited will officially introduce AgGrowPro, a smart sugarcane support service designed to assist cane farmers in the north with growing their crops using best practices in farming.  Earlier today, BSI held a demonstration familiarizing the media with the AgGrowPro ahead of its launch.  The company’s country manager, Mac McLachlan and agronomist Miguel Keme spoke about the process.


Mac McLachlan

Mac McLachlan, Country Manager, A.S.R./B.S.I.

“We’re very excited, you know, to be launching tomorrow the official launch of our AgGrowPro, agro credit package for cane farmers. You know, one thing we’ve seen in recent years is that there is a falloff in cane supply to the mill and that is challenging the profitability of the mill which therefore challenges the viability of the whole industry.  And I think one of the reasons for that has been an absence in Belize, a proper structure for agricultural credit, meaning that it’s structured over a period of time to fix agricultural crops.  And also, there’s been a difficulty getting credit when you really need it, when the inputs are needed for land.  And the second major problem has been a lack of replanting of cane.  Cane, like any plant, has its life and after a while you need to replant to maintain the productivity and I think that the overriding concern has been that already very, very low productivity is getting lower and lower in this last crop.  A number of cane fields, while they couldn’t actually harvest the cane because cutters wouldn’t come and cut it.  So we’re trying to respond to that because the other thing that’s been lacking in the industry is proper service provision for this type of activity.”


Miguel Keme

Miguel Keme, Agronomist, B.S.I.

“In terms of the activities, what is being carried on in the planting or what is different from other methods of planting, basically we are implementing all the best practices management in planting and land preparation and in the maintenance of the field.  For example, in land preparation we are trying to do all the activities in the prime time, the dry season from February to May, late May, we should have all the land that will be planted in the rainy season available there.  This will ensure us, one: eliminating the weeds that we have in that field, eliminating pests, if that field has a historical data that is currently every year being affected with froghopper, definitely that field will have a high amount of eggs.  So doing the land preparation adequately, you would also be breaking that cycle of the pests.”


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