GIS - 30 August, 2017: The know-how and techniques of cultivation for better yield of sugarcane in Mauritius were at the centre of discussions held yesterday during a site visit effected by the Minister of Business, Enterprise and Cooperatives, Mr Soomilduth Bholah, and two Indian experts, at the sugarcane fields of Ramraj Cooperative Credit Society at St Antoine. The planters of the cooperative society were also present.
On this occasion, Minister Bholah underscored that Government will pursue its concerted efforts for the sustainable development and prosperity of the sugarcane industry in the wake of challenges faced by this sector owing to several factors. These include: price reduction and removal of quota, increasing costs of production, low yield of sugar cane, lack of labour and ageing population of cooperative planters.
The Minister recalled that the coming of the two Indian experts to Mauritius follows discussions he had with the Shree Datta Shetkari Sahakari Sakhar Karkhana Ltd (Shree Datta SSSK), a high-technology based sugarcane factory, during his visit to Indian in January 2017. Other potential areas of collaboration that were discussed comprised: sharing of experience in sugarcane cultivation; support for analysis of soil of Mauritius and its impact on yield; techniques for improving yield of sugar cane; and biotechnological support.
Mr Bholah highlighted that Shree Datta SSSK produces 140 to 150 tons of sugarcane per acre but in Mauritius, the production reaches to an average of 80 tons. This difference, he emphasised, can be reduced if appropriate and effective modes of sugarcane cultivation are adopted.
On this score, the Minister urged the planters to learn and adopt the techniques demonstrated by the two Indian experts namely, Mr Appaso Shankar Pail and Mr Amit Vasanto Mane. Prior to the site visit, a presentation was made by the experts to share the theoretical and practical aspects of effective sugarcane cultivation.
The Indian experts will also hold meetings with the members of cooperative credit societies and officers of St Antoine Planters Cooperative Trust, Mauritius Sugar Syndicate, and Mauritius Cane Industry Authority, amongst others. They will have working sessions with sugarcane planters and visit the following sugarcane factories namely, Omnicane and the Rose Belle Sugar Estate.
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