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Sugarmen in Negros hoping for a Negrense SRA head

May 29, 2022

Negros Occidental sugar industry leaders are hoping that the new Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) will be from the province.

Manuel Lamata, United Sugar Producers Federation (UNIFED) president, said they are positive about their wish, saying President-elect Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. has an idea of the current situation of the agriculture sector in the country.

Lamata, along with other leaders in the sugar industry have been actively calling for the removal of SRA head Hermenegildo Serafica.

The call to remove Serafica stemmed over Sugar Order No.3 which authorized the importation of 200,000 metric tons of refined sugar into the country.

According to Lamata, aside from having a Negrense as the next head of the SRA, the new head should also be favorable to local sugarcane farmers, a supporter of the Marcos administration, a pro-consumer, and pro-trader.

He pointed out that the next SRA head should be a Negrense since Negros produces at least 65 percent of the country’s sugar.

Having a Negrense SRA head would also make it more easier for Negrense planters to approach to discuss issues which are affecting the country’s sugar industry.

Aside from having a Negrense SRA head, Lamata is also hoping that Marcos would find a way to fix other issues in the industry such as the rising cost of fuel and fertilizer.

Lamata pointed out the government must find a way to make diesel and fertilizer more cheaper so as to lighten the burden of the sugarcane farmers.

Congressman-elect Yulo

Earlier, Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and 5th district Congressman-elect Emilio Dino Yulo III called on Marcos to appoint a Negrense to head the SRA.

“It is important in the sense that if you’re a Negrense you get to feel the overall situation,” Yulo said.

Yulo also said the sugar industry has a lot of stakeholders, not only the sugar planters.
“There are also the millers, and laborers, most of them are here in the province,” Yulo said.* (DGB)

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