GAWU says sugar production below target, cites factory issues


The Guyana Agriculture and General Workers Union (GAWU) said the current sugar crop is 27,486 tonnes below its target.

In a statement on Sunday, the union noted that production at the Albion Estate is at 22,864 while Blairmont Estate produced 13,776 and the Uitvlugt Estate produced 11,627 – a total of 48,267 tonnes.

The second crop ends on December 20, but even then, the union believes the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) will be unable to meet its target of 75,843 tonnes of sugar.

According to the union, the factories will produce 11, 969 tonnes of sugar in the next two weeks, taking its overall production to 60,236 tonnes.

In its statement, GAWU said the Corporation is struggling with factory problems at Albion which led to three weeks down time due to faulty equipment.

“That is some 420 hours of downtime. At the other locations, the situation is not much better with breakdown hours during this crop reaching 122 and 119 at Blairmont and Uitvlugt respectively,” GAWU said.

The issues the union said have been affecting workers who are some days left without work.

Additionally, GAWU said canes available to harvest during the second crop cannot be harvested and will have to be reaped during next year which will lead to declining returns.

“The cutting of canes beyond their maturity is almost a taboo in the industry as those canes tend to experience declining returns. Moreover, such canes are also difficult for workers to harvest as they require additional efforts by them,” the union explained.

GAWU questioned the efficiency of GuySuCo’s factory operations department to manage the factories.

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