Cane production drops in face of prolonged dry weather

A cane farm at Sarava in Ba goes up in flames. Picture: BALJEET SINGH

CANE production for a group of farmers in Ranadivi, Tavua, has dropped in the face of the prolonged dry weather in the Western Division.

The group of farmers who supply the Rarawai sugar mill in Ba had been unable to keep up with the estimated cane production for this season.

“There are 14 farmers in our gang and each farmer was expected to produce about 400 tonnes,” said sardar Umand Nandri.

“But most of us could only produce between 200 and 300 tonnes.

“For us that is a big loss.” He said the dry weather had been a direct contributor in the drop in supply.

“We have been experiencing the dry weather for three months now. “I was expecting our supply to drop, but I didn’t think that it would be this bad.

“The soil is really dry and we have to start preparing our land for the next season, but most of us are finding it difficult to plough the land because it’s too dry.

“Some of us have our new crops already starting to grow, but we can see them slowly dying.

“Sugar cane is one of the toughest crop to plant and it can withstand a lot of bad weather, but when the soil is too dry it can also die.

“That is what is happening right now.”

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