SUGAR CANE growers supplying the Penang and Rarawai mills will know in two weeks whether they will be able to sell sugar under Fairtrade certification like their counterparts in the north.
The Rarawai Penang Cane Producers Association, a newly-formed association with a 6900-strong membership, said it expected a feedback from Fairtrade following the completion of a financial audit recently.
RPCPA president Gyan Singh said the Fairtrade certification would result in a payout of almost $2million for the benefit of farmers.
Piloted by the Labasa Cane Producers, the Fairtrade agreement requires members to meet certain requirement. These include developing an environmental plan that provides details on how to comply with environmental standards, and planning to ensure agrochemicals on the Fairtrade Labelling Organisation Prohibited Materials List like paraquat are not used on farms.
Fairtrade also recommended that recipients develop an awareness campaign to inform all members of the organisation about Fairtrade and its main principles, rules and regulations.
Other recommendations include having a democratically-elected representative body with equal voting rights for all members as the supreme decision-making body for Fairtrade issues, and a plan to encourage women to be more involved in the functioning of the organisation.