Some shareholders plucking sugar cane plants during the conducted tour of the Zambia sugar factory in Lusaka yesterday.
Zambia Sugar Plc managing director Rebecca Katowa says the sugar industry in the SADC region has not been spared by erratic water supply.

Mrs. Katowa said water challenges in the sugar industry were real and with the increased load shedding in the country, a reduction in crop yields was expected.

“We depend on power to irrigate the crop and if we are not able to put water on the crop then it impacts directly on the yield and we will have some yields coming off as a result of not having enough water on the crop,” she said.

Mrs. Katowa said this in an interview with Journalists in Livingstone today, ahead of the opening of the 15th Federation of SADC Sugar Producers (FSSP) to be held under the theme, “Positioning SADC Sugar Industries towards sustainability”.

Zambia Sugar Plc is a member of FSSP and also represents Kasama Sugar and Consolidated Farming Limited which produces Kafue Sugar.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Katowa said volatility of the currencies such as the dollar and euro had impacted negatively on the sugar industry.

“Currencies are fluctuating within the whole of SADC; the euro, dollar exchange rate does impact negatively on the industry,” she said.

She also cited global surpluses of sugar as a major challenge for sugar producers in the SADC region.

Mrs. Katowa said despite having access to the European market, prices of the commodity had collapsed due to sugar reforms within the European Union.

“We do have access to the European market. We have quota free, tariff free access into Europe however, with the sugar reforms that have taken place in the EU, prices have collapsed and the prices we can get out there are no longer remunerative, or sustainable in terms of cost of production,” she said.

She said this development affected all sugar producers in the SADC region and the conference would provide a roadmap on how the challenges would be tackled in a wholesome manner.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. This Pathetic Front has to protect jobs by being strategic about the allocation of power. How can you loadshed equally across the board. Does Zambia Sugar have the same developmental impact as Chez Ntemba?

    I would rather sit in the dark with a job, than have no job and no money to pay for the little electricity that I may have.

    Anyway, as they said “Ifintu Ni Lungu!”. *sic*

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    • Now this load sheding is coming to sugar. 1kg will become 500grams.
      Pf govt is working hard to ensure that the Zambian people have enough sugar. We may have to import sugar says Agriculture minister to cover the short fall. The minister has called on investing in sugar production so that next time this happens we will have enough stock.
      Meanwhile president E Lungu has asked Zambians to be united beyond tribal lines to pray for rains so that nakambala can be flooded.

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    • zambians lets not be politicking everything,what has PF to do with low water levels.
      Lets understand the times we are leaving in.
      When the Ethiopians where dying in the 80s you thought it was fiction.

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    • Tell your Kachema to bring more rains using his blood magic. Maybe we there can be no need for load shedding.

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  2. Add sugar shedding to load shedding, we are in trouble especially that our sugar is fortified with Vitamin A

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  3. Zambia Sugar is a big company, why don’t they invest in Solar Energy. The Sun is free and the good Lord has given us so much Sun that goes to waste. Excess power could be sold back to Zesco and the National Grid. (Food for thought).
    Drill water from the ground and try to re-use water (recycle). There is too much waste of water.

    I rest my case

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    • Thats the question which Hon. Kazabu asked on Tuesday when ZESCO had organized a workshop for Members of Parliament on the current load shedding. To recycle water that go into waste, but it seems ZESCO is short of progressive ideas. Just interested in earning heft salaries.

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  4. Sugar itself can generate power. Why should you depend on Zesco. Please be strategic in what you are doing.

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    • Please spare us your ignorance. They are talking about water levels to irrigate their sugar cane not power???

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    • @Mpika man, read the article again; power is also used to pump the water to irrigate the crop.

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  5. Just like SPAR supermarket in Livingstone, they import Tomato and Onions from South Africa and yet, Zambezi river is ‘stone’ throw away where they could utilise it’s vast waters to irrigate a huge field of vegetables, twasebana….

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  6. Imwe ba kasowe….comment with level headed minds. You are failing to accept that the low water levels is affecting our power generation. Zambia Sugar is affected by this as they need alot of water. This pronouncement by Zambia Sugar is just confirmation of what Zesco has been talking about. But unfortunately, Zambians talk on issues they don’t even fully understand .

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