Earlier this week cane farmers received the final payment for the 2016-2017 cane crop season which was estimated at being between $9.05 and $ 9.28 per ton of cane. So looking at the crop season after three payments the total estimated payment to cane farmers was of $64.00, which includes payment for bagasse.

Today as the 2017-2018 cane crop season looms in the horizon, BSI/ ASR issued the first estimated average cane price for the 2018 cane crop which is at forty three dollars and forty cents per ton of cane. So�this means that farmers can expect to receive an estimated thirty six dollars and two cents as first payment for the upcoming cane season.

Looking at prices compared to this past crop, there is no denying that farmers will be receiving a considerably smaller payment per ton of sugar. A letter sent to stakeholders by ASR attributes the lower payment to the sharp drop in sugar prices in the EU market as a result of the reforms which came into effect on October 1st 2017.

Now, while a drop in the prices has been anticipated for several years, there is no doubt that these prices will have an effect on our local farmers, how severe this effect will be? We will just have to wait and see.