MILLS EX­PECTED TO START

Fiji Sun - - Sunbiz - LAUTOKA CHARLES CHAM­BERS EDITED BY: FARZANA NISHA Feed­back: charles.cham­bers@fi­jisun.com.fj

Three su­gar mills are ex­pected to restart crush­ing to­day, af­ter shut­ting down op­er­a­tions for Di­wali. The mills are, Labasa, Lautoka and Rarawai. Pe­nang is closed af­ter the dam­age done by Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Winston. This Di­wali shut­down is nor­mal each year as most farm­ers cel­e­brate the fes­ti­val. No har­vest­ing is done a day be­fore Di­wali. Lautoka Su­gar Mill was ex­pected to be­gin at 4 this morn­ing but this would be re­viewed in light of the present wet weather. The mill’s gen­eral man­ager Vil­iame Savou said they would first check on cane sup­ply. “We presently have some su­gar cane on the rail carts in the yard and I saw some more at Sa­beto wait­ing to be hauled to the mill,” Mr Savou said.

As mill op­er­a­tions were closed, the lo­co­mo­tives would have started pulling the rail carts by last night. “We would also be wait­ing to see what su­gar cane is be­ing brought by the lor­ries.” Mr Savou has urged farm­ers to make an ex­tra ef­fort in get­ting su­gar cane har­vested and de­liv­ered to the mill. He said the wet weather would def­i­nitely af­fect cane sup­ply but was hope­ful farm­ers made an ef­fort to have it har­vested and trans­ported to the mill. As of Satur­day, the Lautoka Su­gar Mill had crushed around 280,000 tonnes of su­gar cane pro­duc­ing about 29,000 tonnes of su­gar. Mr Savou said the TCTS (Tonne of Cane per Tonne of Su­gar) was around 9.5. This fig­ure would be good con­sid­er­ing the mill would have crushed less cane to pro­duce a tonne of su­gar. Mr Savou said the Lautoka Mill was ready and there were no prob­lems to af­fect crush­ing.

Photo: CHARLES CHAM­BERS

Trucks out­side the Lautoka Su­gar Mill on Satur­day.

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