Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Season Was 'Very Frustrating': Growers

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Season Was 'Very Frustrating': Growers

Article excerpt

TED Bussey remembers the days when competition ran hot between Mackay Sugar mills, to see which could crush the most cane each week.

Those were the days when workers had a fair amount of pride in working for the milling company, the cane grower said.

But Mr Bussey believes that pride has dissipated and that has contributed to the falling milling performance over the past five years.

Mackay Sugar chairman Andrew Cappello also said half the down time was caused by "people issues".

"There was once a time when Marian (mill employees) wouldn't let Farleigh put it over them. The people were really proud to work there," Mr Bussey said.

But he also said that during the past few years management had sacrificed maintenance work in order to expand, and that had now culminated in one of the most disappointing seasons he had witnessed.

"Now we're like a broken tractor - we'll be very hard to fix," he said.

Mr Bussey said there were only one or two weeks when he got his full allotment of 41 bins, and often had to make do with about 12. …

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