Sugar

To cure your sugar addiction, spend some time watching sugar cane being cut by hand.

This week I’ve been working with a farming association who grows 100 hectares (nearly 250 acres) of sugar cane under contract with a sugar processing company located roughly 40 kilometers from them along the national highway, the EN6, which runs from the port of Beira to Zimbabwe.

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I’m training association members how to market and sell their vegetable production, an enterprise they are developing to diversify their business. Each day at 2 PM I’ve conducted a marketing training seminar immediately adjacent to the sugar cane fields. Each day I’m stunned by the progress made by forty workers wielding machetes.

It’s brutal smokey, dirty, lung-choking physical labor. The day prior to cutting the fields are burned. I have simply developed a cough from sitting a couple of hours every day next to the fields.

burn from highway

The workers cut by hand beginning at 6 am. The winter the sun forces them to quit before 5:00 pm, otherwise they would keep working.

cutting caneA typical worker earns 250 mt ($4) each day. These are the people who feed the world’s sugar habit, allowing us a cheap burst of pleasure and comfort.

piling caneRemember them the next time you drink a soda or consume your favorite sweet treat.  Express gratitude and respect.

carrying cane

 

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