Sugar World

Publisher:  GATT-Fly, Toronto, Canada
Year Published:  1978  
Pages:  6pp  
Resource Type:  Article
Cx Number:  CX796

This publication gives an overview of the concerns relating to those countries, mostly third-world, which are involved in the production of sugar.

Abstract:  This publication gives an overview of the concerns relating to those countries, mostly third-world, which are involved in the production of sugar. Basically, the difficulty lies in the fact that the price of sugar has lowered to below-cost-of-production level. Sugar workers have no control of the market setting the prices. On the Canadian scene an article cites The Globe & Mail which reports that Redpath Industries intends to build high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) plants which will most likely replace imported cane sugar, putting many Canadian sugar refinery workers out of work.
The newsletter also reports on the problems of sugar workers that are specific to their own country. For example, Haitian sugar workers have been brought to the Dominican Republic by the droves, and there is very little effort on the part of the D.R. government to ship them back after harvest. This exposes the Haitians to direct exploitation, in the form of cheap labour. Further, their situation is worsened by the fact that they are in that country illegally so they cannot make complaints about housing, salary, and cheating cane-weighing stations. In Nicaragua,the powerful Somoza family is in control and has ruled for some 40 years. The future looks bleak when Nicaraguan workers must depend on this ruling family to speak on their behalf when negotiating international sugar agreements.
The article suggests that the entire international sugar industry must be restructured in order that sugar workers, through mutual support, may gain more control over their work and lives.


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