Sugar mills in Maharashtra clear 82 per cent of FRP dues

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A farmer in India's Maharashtra state transports sugarcane. Photo/IAC

Sugar mills in Maharashtra have managed to clear around 82.09 per cent of the fair and remunerative price (FRP) dues amounting to Rs 11,630.25 crore for the current season till February 15 and have paid excess FRP for the same period. Sugar mills in the state, however, still owe dues of Rs 2,535.96 crore for the current season.

With crushing continuing in full swing, some sugar mills in Maharashtra have already ended their operations for the 2020-21 season.  According to the latest arrears report shared by the Sugar Commissionerate, millers have so far paid farmers FRP dues of Rs 11,630.25 crore for the sugar season of 2020-21. Around 183 sugar factories crushed a total of 641.07 tonne of sugarcane. Millers had cleared around 88.82 per cent of FRP dues same time last year amounting to Rs 6,780.59 crore.

According to the Sugar Commissionerate, the total payable FRP till February 15 was Rs 14,160.26 crore, of which mills paid farmers around Rs 11,630.25 crore. Last year, the total FRP payable till February 15 was Rs 7,633.70 crore, of which millers had cleared Rs 6,780.59 crore. Around 140 sugar mills had participated in crushing operations and crushed some 332 lakh tonne of cane in the corresponding period last season.

In the current crushing season, millers have paid an excess of Rs 5.95 crore of FRP to farmers, officials said. At least 79 mills have cleared 100 per cent of dues owed to farmers. Around 104 of the 180 factories that participated in crushing operations still owe cane payments to farmers.

Nearly 53 sugar mills have cleared less than 60 per cent of dues and 23 mills have made cane payments of between 60 per cent and 79.99 per cent. Another 28 factories have cleared 80-99.99 per cent of dues. According to the crushing data shard by the Western India Sugar Mills Association, 185 mills in Maharashtra have crushed 749.58 lakh tonne of cane to produce 761.85 lakh quintal of sugar till February 15 with a sugar recovery of 10.16 per cent.

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