Sugar producers in Uganda have blamed the sharp increase in the prices of the commodity on sugarcane shortages that have more than doubled the cost of the raw material compared to what it used to be paid for seven months ago.
The chairman of the Uganda Sugar Technologies Association (UTSA), Mwine Jim Kabeho, told Daily Monitor in a telephone interview on Tuesday that the price of sugarcane has risen from Shs80,000 per tonne in October/November last year to Shs175,000 per tonne this year.
â€œThe cost of production went high so the producers had to adjust the prices of the commodity accordingly,â€ he said.
Sugar prices have been on the rise since last year. The price of the commodity shot up from Shs3,500 to Shs5,000 per kilogramme in December last year, which was blamed on Christmas.
But the price had by early this week hit the Shs7,000 mark, the highest amount that sugar has cost in seven years.
Kirunda Magoola, the corporate communications manager of Kinyara Sugar Limited, Ugandaâ€™s second biggest sugar producer with production capacity of 120,000 tonnes per day, says that the shortages have not affected the firm since President Museveni banned the transportation of sugarcane from Bunyoro.