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British Sugar Leaves Beet Growers High And Dry
17/08/06

The Tenant Farmers Association has written to British Sugar expressing its bitter disappointment over the new arrangements it is putting in place with growers following its decision to close two of its six processing plants – York and Allscott.

Sugar Beet Harvesting
courtesy of www.clonakiltyagriculturalcollege.com

Sugar Beet Harvesting

TFA National Chairman Reg Haydon said “I have yet to speak to a TFA member who believes that British Sugar’s announcement comes anywhere close to being considered a fair deal. Whilst British Sugar may remain committed to sugar processing, it has shown scant regard for sugar York and Allscott growers who feel that they have been left ‘high and dry’” by the new arrangements announced”.

British Sugar is hoping that growers previously supplying its factories at York and Allscott will divert their production to its plants at Newark, Bury and Wissington. A transport allowance of up to £4.00 a tonne will be payable by British Sugar however the beet price itself is also due to fall.

“Even with the transport allowances being offered, for most growers previously supplying Allscott and York, it will not make economic sense to transport beet into Newark, let alone Bury or Wissington, when beet prices are £20/tonne or below” said Mr Haydon.

Some growers will be allowed to give up their contacts with British Sugar entirely; however they will only receive compensation amounting to a maximum of £8 per contracted tonne

“The payments announced for those relinquishing contract are an affront when you consider in the British Sugar out-goers scheme of a just few years ago sums of at least 5 times what is now being offered were offered to growers” said Mr Haydon.

“We understand the competitive strains faced by British Sugar within the international market but the fairer way to address those concerns is to make better use of the EU Restructuring Scheme, relinquish more of our National Quota and ensure that producers, hauliers and British Sugar are properly compensated through the €700/tonne that the scheme makes available, to be split between all affected parties” said Mr Haydon.

link Negotiations conclude on new sugar beet contract
link Biofuel crops pose no threat to UK food production
link Shrewsbury MP Meets With British Sugar
link Crop Market Update

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