JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Agriculture Minister, Hon. Derrick Kellier, is hailing the significant investments being undertaken by the management of Appleton Estate in the retooling of factory operations and innovations in the field to boost sugar cane yield.
  • Minister Kellier was speaking to JIS News after a tour of the St. Elizabeth-based plant on Wednesday (May 21), to get a first-hand look at new factory equipment and methods being implemented to improve the productivity of farmlands.
  • Minister Kellier said the practices being employed in the cane fields will encourage high levels of productivity and the company will soon be reaping the benefits of its innovations and investments.

Agriculture Minister, Hon. Derrick Kellier, is hailing the significant investments being undertaken by the management of Appleton Estate in the retooling of factory operations and innovations in the field to boost sugar cane yield.

Minister Kellier was speaking to JIS News after a tour of the St. Elizabeth-based plant on Wednesday (May 21), to get a first-hand look at new factory equipment and methods being implemented to improve the productivity of farmlands.

He said that while the various projects are still work in progress, Appleton “is on its way to becoming more competitive nationally and internationally.”

“Clearly, they have modernised the factory over the last couple of years, brought in new equipment and seems to have made the plant a more efficient and production-oriented operation. That will bode well for them because if you want to be able to compete on a national and international scale, you have to have high levels of productivity in your operation,” he noted.

Minister Kellier said the practices being employed in the cane fields will encourage high levels of productivity and the company will soon be reaping the benefits of its innovations and investments.

“In their field operations, we have clearly seen where their agronomic practices are in keeping with high levels of productivity and clearly, the gains that they have made and practices that they have employed are paying dividends to them,” he noted.

Minister Kellier said he is particularly pleased about the waste-to-energy project, which has enabled Appleton to generate its own energy and is having a positive impact on the environment.

“This is something that ought to be commended, because that, in itself, will help them to reduce cost to make them more competitive,” he said.

Minister Kellier is encouraging the management of other sugar factories in Jamaica to follow the lead of Appleton.

“We really think that this is a good example for others to follow. If you see something that works well somewhere else, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel and if the results of the interventions that are made here can be copied elsewhere, it is in the interest of those other factories to come and learn something and I am sure it will be to the benefit for the development of the industry,” he contended.

“Generally, based on the improvement in the production of sugar and expansion of the acreages, things are looking in the right direction here at Appleton and we want to encourage them to continue the work they are doing, to lift the standards to ensure that they are ISO compliant in every regard,” he added.

He noted that the Ministry and the Government remain committed to ensuring that sugar factories become as efficient as possible.

Minister Kellier was accompanied on the tour by State Minister, Hon. Luther Buchanan; and Member of Parliament for North East St. Elizabeth, Raymond Pryce.