GuySuCo surpasses sales target by more than $700M in first half of 2021
- boost in revenue attributed to change in sales mix
By Shikema Dey
Though a shortfall in production was experienced, the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) for the first half of 2021 surpassed its target for the sale of sugar and molasses by $734 million.
Making this revelation was the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Sasenarine Singh who on Tuesday attributed that increase in revenue to the change in the corporation’s sales mix.
In a bid to make itself more self-sufficient and sustainable, GuySuCo had moved away from the sale of bulk sugar and invested heavily in the packaged product, which is in greater demand and carries a higher cost on the market.
That strategy, in turn, bore fruit and according to the CEO, the corporation’s primary focus now is packaged sugar for the “top shelf.”
GuySuCo had set a target of 42,609 metric tons of sugar for the first crop but was only able to produce 29,650 metric tons – a shortfall of 12,959 metric tons but according to Singh, the corporation still raked $5.9 billion.
“This is a phenomenal feat since one would expect with reduced production, the revenue was expected to drop but this did not happen,” he commented.
“We are taking this company, we are making it more resilient, more robust, more responsive to the challenge around the industry especially Climate Change.”
Now, with the new cash inflow, Singh revealed that the corporation has begun paying off-trade creditors over the last six months.
“We have paid off the people who offer critical parts to our fields and factory…all of our fertilizers have been paid for 2021, all of our agrochemicals, all of the Personal Protection equipment for the employees so we’re in a good space when it comes to our core needs.”
He outlined that GuySuCo even managed to pay off the debt owed to the Guyana Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU) for Union dues and Credit Union dues. Payments were also made to the National Insurance Scheme.
“I can proudly state that GuySuCo does not owe GAWU one blind cent and we plan to keep this relationship that way because we are all about the workers,” he added.
Notwithstanding this, the corporation is still taking a hit after many of its crops are inundated by floodwaters. But according to the CEO, GuySuCo is still optimistic about the outlook of the industry.
A new target of 49,971 metric tons of sugar has been set but that number may change after a detailed flood assessment is conducted to determine just how much has been lost.
Of that figure, the Blairmont Estate in Region Five is expected to produce some 16,500 metric tons; that figure is expected to hold as Blairmont was the least affected by the flooding.
The Uitvulgt Estate in Region Three, according to Singh will resume production in two weeks’ time and is expected to produce some 11,141 metric tons.
The reminding figure will go to the Albion Estate, however, he was keen to note that the outlook at that sugar factory does not seem promising as many of the young cane crops have been damaged by the floodwaters.
Singh said, “it is an ambitious target but we are making steady progress and we have started the process at Uitvlugt and Blairmont and we await the receding waters at Albion to start that project.”