Last year in July, news broke that almost four thousand tonnes of molasses spoilt in storage tanks at the BSI sugar factory. The projected economic loss was almost half a million dollars - and ASR/BSI said that the farmers would have to share in the loss. The cane famers rejected and fought that, saying ASR/BSI was to blame for whatever went wrong in storage and they alone should bear the loss. In the intervening months, some of the molasses were recovered, which lessened the loss in both the volume of molasses and the loss in earnings.
And, now, 11 months later, the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association and BSI issued a joint statement today, saying that they've reached an amicable agreement.
The BSCFA submitted a claim for payment of its share of revenues to the tune of 101 thousand 820 dollars, and BSI agreed to compensate them fully with interest. The joint statement says "BSI has agreed to make these payments within two weeks of the signing of the agreement together with 6% interest for the period November 7, 2016 to the date when payments are made."
But, BSI is not accepting blame. The statement says, quote, "Both parties agree that neither has liability to the other for this loss of molasses and have made adjustments to their systems and record-keeping to increase vigilance and to, as much as possible, prevent the re-occurrence of this reaction." End quote.
It adds, quote, "Both parties view this settlement as an opportunity to strengthen their relationship as business partnersâ€¦" end quote.