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Extinction of The Sugarcane Industry

“If nothing is done quickly, sugarcane will certainly be an endangered product,” said Sara Madalena (CDS/PP candidate).

According to the candidate, the price currently paid to producers (not counting the 10 cents of support announced by the Regional Government) is only 40 cents per kilo (19 cents paid by the mills + 21 cents paid by the European programme – POSEI).

In view of the selling price of products derived from sugar cane, in particular rum and honey, which amount to tens of euros, it argues that the amount paid to the producer is manifestly low and, for that reason, this value needs to be revised.

Sara Madalena gave as an example Mr. Avelino Pita, the largest producer of sugar cane in the municipality of Ponta do Sol, who said that sugarcane is the lowest yield agricultural product and admits that he will soon give up production. It is also known that another producer contacted by the applicant revealed that he has given up production and dug up the last 70 tons of sugarcane last week.

This is an “injustice,” as the CDS-PP’s candidacy for the regional elections points out in a statement and recalls the Regional Government’s promise to support this sector with a value of 10 cents per kilo. Sara Madalena also recalls the promise of support after the storms of last October, which has not yet materialised.

“This lack of support, the low payment of the product, combined with the average age of the producers, will bring this agricultural sector to extinction, and Madeira may lose some of its emblematic products, such as the traditional honey cake and poncha.”

Samantha Gannon

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