Shankar Bennur

This will help in dealing with the problem of excess production

Factories cannot refuse to crush cane of registered growers

Crop will be ready for harvest in October in Mysore district

YSORE: The district administration has launched a drive to encourage sugarcane growers to register with factories to deal with the problem of excess production.

With the closure of several jaggery-making units, which were buying sugarcane from growers, the factories, including those operating in the neighbouring districts, are likely to get a huge supply of cane as there are possibilities of rise in production and supply during the next season.

Official sources said that compared to Mandya district, the area under sugarcane cultivation was less in Mysore district. Nevertheless, if growers registered with the factories every year, they (factories) would be under obligation to crush their cane, thereby ending their problems over the issue of crushing.

Although factories in the district were capable to crush 16 lakh tonnes every year, they depended on sugarcane from neighbouring districts if the supply was poor here. “If farmers commit themselves to sell their produce to factories, they cannot refuse. Also, the district administration will intervene to ensure justice to farmers in case the factories refuse to crush sugarcane from registered growers,” a senior official of the district administration told The Hindu.

Sources in the Agriculture Department said growers, who had cultivated sugarcane in 1,500 acres in Periyapatna and Heggadadevana Kote taluks, did not register with the factories. The reason for all growers not registering with the factories was the jaggery units, which, during some season, offered prices higher than that offered by factories when there was demand for jaggery. “When jaggery prices fall and the units temporarily shutdown, growers bring their produce to factories leading to tussles,” they said.

Usually, factories maintained records of the growers who had registered with them. “If they default, despite making commitment to sell their produce, the factories refuse to buy produce from those farmers in future,” they said.

“The crisis over crushing of excess sugarcane might not recur next year if the factories, based on registrations, make an assessment of the extent of cane they could procure from growers in their jurisdiction, provided growers register with them,” the sources said.