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Butali Sugar resumes production after two-month break

NEWS
By Jackline Inyanji | November 6th 2021
By Jackline Inyanji | November 6th 2021
NEWS
Butali Sugar finance official Daniel Kiyondi, Butali sugar managing director Sanjay Patel and business consultant Eastern central Africa, Tonny Mzee. [Jackline Inyanji, Standard]

Kakamega North-based Butali Sugar Company has resumed operations after a two-month break for expansion and routine maintenance.

This comes as a relief for the 65,000 farmers contracted by the miller.

The management said it is expanding the companies capacity to increase sugar production.

Managing Director Sanjey Pate said they want to increase their crushing capacity by 2,000 tonnes of cane per day, from 3,000 tonnes.

Farmers interviewed welcomed the development terming the miller's presumption operations timely as their crop is ready for harvesting.

Sanjey said harvesting and transportation of sugar cane will be accelerated.

“We have been developing between 6,000 and 7,000 acres under sugarcane annually. This forced us to increase our crushing capacity and improve our efficiency in terms of cane harvesting and haulage,” said Sanjey.

He added: “We are also in the process of launching a cogeneration factory and other subsidiary industries for the benefit of our farmers in Kakamega, Nandi and Bungoma counties.”

The miller has been paying farmer Sh3,833 per tonne but Sanjey said they are ready to pay whatever price that will be set by the Interim Sugarcane Pricing Committee appointed by Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya.

“We are ready to give farmers the best price based on the recommendations of the cane pricing committee,” said Sanjey.

Butali Sugarcane Farmers Association chairman William Kopi said a majority of the farmers have secured permits allowing them to harvest their crop.

“Farmers will start harvesting their crop today (Friday) because the factory has put in place proper measures to ensure the harvested crop is collected in the shortest time possible from the farms,” said Mr Kopi.

He said the new tractors bought by Butali Sugar Company recently will help end the delays in collecting harvested cane which ends up drying on farms.

"Farmers have been experiencing challenges especially delays in collection and transportation of cane. Bad roads in this area have only served to compound the situation further," said Kopi.

Butali sugar has bought 100 tractors to improve cane delivery within its catchment area.

Auto dealer CMC Holdings delivered the first fleet of 45 Holland tractors to the factory last week. They cost the company Sh450 million.

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