While the results of the 2019 sugar harvest have yet to be disclosed by officials, private farmers are predicting bitter returns.

And they fear drought-like conditions may affect the maturation of canes to be harvested in 2020 as well.

Immediate past chairman of the Barbados Sugar Industry Limited (BSIL) and veteran farmer Patrick Bethell painted a dismal picture of the private planters’ results.

“Most of the private farmers’ output dropped significantly including the top farms,” he said. “Mine dropped by 40 per cent. Compared to last year, the quality of this year’s cane was better. It was dry so you got more sugar per tonne of cane but we ain’t get no tonnes of cane; and it is going to be worse next year.”