There’s enough sugar on the table

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Annual meeting of the Standing Committee on Sugarcane headed by Abdul Basit Khan, Acting Secretary, Ministry of National Food Security and Research was held here to discuss the crop situation and availability of sugar. The meeting was attended by Progressive Farmers, Farmers Associations, Chambers of Agriculture, Representatives of Provincial Agriculture Departments, Federal Institutions dealing with Agriculture Trade also attended the meeting. Abdul Basit welcomed the farmers and other stakeholders and appreciated their contribution in the production of bumper cane crop and record sugar production in the country. Basit informed the participants about the importance of the Standing Committee Meeting of the sugarcane and sugar sectors. He asked the participants about the crop situation and availability of sugar and its domestic and international prices. He also thanked the professionals of the institution for maintaining the cane and sugar price in the country. He said that with the grace of Allah and efforts of stakeholders the Government was able to maintain the availability of sugar at the reasonable price in the country. The thirst of the meeting was on the determination of support price level by considering the farmers cost of production estimates, situation of the current sugarcane crop, prospects for the next crop, consideration of all other competing crops and keeping in view the import parity and export parity prices. Farmers also raised the reservation on various issues including rising cost of inputs, appearance of middlemen in the market, under weighment of cane and unnecessary cuts due to cane quality, non payment of sugarcane dues of farmers worth by four billion in the Punjab and non-payments of quality premium. The Acting Secretary assured the participants that their concerns and views would be sent to Cabinet for their resolution. The meeting ended with the vote of thanks to and from the chair.