Home Crops Low cane prices irks farmers in Kenya

Low cane prices irks farmers in Kenya

by Grace Kisembo

Kenya Union of Sugar Plantation and Allied Workers (KUSPAW) bemoaned lower cane prices announced by the Sugar Directorate.

Francis Wangara, KUSPAW Secretary General said the Directorate should consider a price hike, because of the acute cane shortage.

“We do not even have enough cane to take to the factories. Millers are struggling to get what to crush,” Wangara said, adding that the directorate should look for ways to motivate farmers to plant more cane.

“Why is the directorate favouring the millers yet farmers struggle a lot to plant cane,” Wangara quizzed.

Sharing the same sentiments, Richard Ogendo, an official of the Kenya National Sugarcane Growers Association, said the price reduction was in bad faith.

“We are already grappling with sugar shortage in the country and what they should have done is to find a way of ensuring that farmers are comfortable,” he said.

Kenya National Federation of Sugarcane Farmers deputy national chairman Charles Atyang protested the reduction of price saying farmers were not involved.

“We are the farmers, we need to be involved when decisions are being made, whether good or bad,” he said adding that the reason given by the directorate for the move is not convincing.

Sugar Directorate recently announced that the price per tonne of cane had reduced from Sh4,320 to Sh4,052 because millers could not afford to pay the initial figures charged by farmers.

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