SUGARCANE growers in the Western Division say the forecast price of $62.70 announced by the Fiji Sugar Corporation over the weekend was a positive sign for the industry.
This development has prompted Sugar Cane Growers Council CEO Sundresh Chetty to call on farmers to begin harvesting preparations in earnest.
"This is an improvement from the $62.58 forecast last season," he said.
"We urge all growers to start their gang meetings and make the necessary preparations to their farm equipment, tractors and lorries.
"The fourth cane payment for last year's crop will be paid out later this month and farmers should be able to meet financial obligations and begin final preparations once this is done."
The Rarawai-Penang Cane Producers Association executive manager Sanjina Narain said her members were upbeat about the forecast price announcement.
"It is very encouraging to see the cane price improving steadily and growers in the industry have increased considerably over the past few years as a result of this," she said.
Cane payments have continuously improved since the dismal payout of $49.16 per tonne in 2010. In 2011, this increased to $65.67 and more than $80 was paid out for the 2012 season.