There is still quite a bit of sugarcane burning going on in Vermilion parish these days. I’m thinking it’s probably close to the end but every day this week, I’ve seen the dark smoke clouds in the skies around our home in Maurice.
Some of you may wonder why farmers burn the sugarcane in the first place. According to LSU Ag Center, there are several reasons: lower cost of production and more efficient harvesting of the cane, it reduces the amount of cane being transported and thereby reduces the number of hauling trucks on public roads (less wear and tear of the roads), and it also increases the yield of sugar while improving the quality of the sugar.
Farmers have been growing sugarcane for more than 200 years in Louisiana. The sugar industry is important here as more than 30,000 people are employed by it and it contributes about $2 billion to our economy.