“We have started talks with the state authorities for acquiring 50 acres of land for the proposed mill in the sugarcane rich belt of Saharanpur-Muzaffarnagar in Western UP,” he said adding the project would take around 12 months to complete after land allocation.
Owing to high internal sugar requirement for its own food products, including jams, the sugar plant will be largely captive and partly for the open market.
The company estimates that 10,000 tonnes of sugar would be utilised by the company itself for production of food products, while 5,000 tonnes would be available for sale in the open market.
“We have the financing roadmap ready for the project and investible funds would be generated both through internal accruals and borrowings,” Seth informed.
He said once the plant is established, it would create huge savings and value for the company for its ‘large and varied’ food business. “It will also generate additional demand for sugarcane and create hundreds of jobs in the beneficiary area.”
Besides, it would be a fully integrated plant, whereby all its byproducts such as molasses will be utilised for value-added products, such as soya sauce and cornflakes or other captive requirements.
“Since, it will be an integrated unit with a large percentage of captive consumption of final products, the commercial viability and stability even during lean phases is assured. This means no disgruntled farmers or unhappy business partners,” he added.
UP is country’s top sugarcane and sugar producer and last year had produced more than 12 million tonnes (MT) of the sweetener. In the current 2018-19 sugar season, 119 sugar mills, mostly private sector, had participated in sugarcane crushing operations in UP with some mills still operational before the season wraps up in the coming weeks.
“The plant is dedicated to the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to create gainful employment in rural India, while also helping farmers to increase their income. Apart from setting up of the sugar plant, we will also encourage farmers for contract farming to enhance their income, which we have achieved successfully in Punjab,” he noted.
GD Foods has firmed up contract farming on 6,000 acres in Punjab for the cultivation of tomatoes, green chilli, lemon, red chilli, mustard and apple. The company also operates a tomato paste plant in Tarn Taran, Punjab. It will invest an additional Rs 45 crore towards expanding other plants in India.