Importataion of cheap sugar worrying, farmers


Sugarcane farmers through their lobby groups in Western Kenya have called upon Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya to review sugar import licenses to cushion farmers from making losses.

Kenya Association and Allied Products chairman Charles Atyang says cheap sugar imports are flooding the market.

Atyang says the licenses issued out to sugar importers a year ago should now be reviewed with an aim of safeguarding the interest of farmers.

He says farmers are the major losers as they are unable to have their matured cane harvested by the mills.

Speaking to the press in Kisumu, Atyang called for a strict control of imports to keep the sector a float.

Sugar Campaign for Change (SUCAM) Western Kenya coordinator Michael Arum blamed Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA) for the mess in the sugar sector.

Arum says flooding of markets with cheap sugar is as a result of a justification by AFA that most mills were not in operation.

Contrary to that, Arum says mills are in operation and the cheap imports will now slow down the mills production rate.

He says farmers will bear the brunt of mills slowing down their production since none will be able to have more cane.