Muzaffarnagar, June 25 (IANS) While Uttar Pradesh has set a new record for sugar production this year, jaggery production has also been higher than expected in the state. According to the estimates of the trade organisations, this year, the production of jaggery in the entire Uttar Pradesh has been around 50 lakh tonnes — 11 per cent higher than the average annual production of 4.5 million tonnes.
Jaggery production comes under cottage and small scale industries and this year, the jaggery producing crusher was operational even in the Coronavirus-triggered lockdown period and due to good sugarcane crop, especially in western Uttar Pradesh, production has increased.
President of the Federation of Gur (jaggery) Traders, Arun Khandelwal, said that the production of jaggery was underway even during the lockdown period and the supply of sugarcane was also constant. He said that production is currently underway in some units in the Muzaffarpur area and about 400-500 bags (40 kg in one bag) is arriving daily.
According to sugar industry organisations, sugar production in Uttar Pradesh reached a record level this year due to increased sugarcane arrivals in sugar mills.
Khandelwal says that this year, there was a bumper crop of sugarcane in the state and the recovery has also been good, so the production of not only sugar but also jaggery is more than many years.
According to a release issued by the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) on June 2, Uttar Pradesh had produced 125.46 lakh tonnes as on May 31 in the current sugar season 2019-20 (September-October), the highest sugar production in the state.
He said that about 30 lakh tonnes of jaggery is expected to be produced this year in western Uttar Pradesh.
The jaggery business has also been profitable along with the increase in production during the lockdown period.
Business sources state that when liquor shops were closed during the nationwide lockdown, the demand for jaggery increased in the countryside liquor production units, which fetched good prices for jaggery.
According to information received from traders, there are currently about 11.50 lakh bags of jaggery stock in Muzaffarnagar cold storage, apart from jaggery stock in cold storage located elsewhere in the state.
Muzaffarnagar is the largest market for jaggery in the country, from where, around 4,000 bags of jaggery are sent to different parts of the country daily. Businessmen said this time, jaggery is being sent to Bihar, eastern Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat.