Juice machine helps farmers earn six times more from sugarcane

Farmers and vendors can earn more than Sh400 by minting the juice from a single sugarcane with the help of a rechargeable battery powered extractor machine.

Earning about Sh400 from a single sugar cane is more than six times higher than what is realised by directly selling it in pieces.

A nine-feet sugar cane can be sliced into three parts, which are sold at Sh20, bringing the total to Sh60.

But Jeff Selembo of Peace Officers for Christ International (POCI), a Kiambu based agribusiness religious organisation, has repeatedly found that the same cane can generate up to Sh450 with the help of an electric powered juice extractor.

“Three feet of a rich piece of sugarcane can give one litre of the juice. The juice is packaged into three cups of slightly more than 300ml. Each of them is sold at Sh50,” he said.

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Three similar pieces give a litre each, making a total of three litres from the entire cane.

If from one litre, there are three cups, the entire cane yields nine of them. With each of them selling at Sh50, the whole cane would earn Sh450.

The orgnisation mints and packages cane juice for sale on orders.

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Vendors at Keumbu and Bobaracho regions in Kisii County sell six, one-and-half feet long sugar cane pieces at Sh50.

Although they are of the thin sweet type, the canes can give even two litres of the juice, worth Sh300.

Besides minting the juice, POCI also sells the extracting machines at Sh120,000; the price is, however, negotiable according to Selembo.

“Apart from the machine, which is powered directly by electricity, there is another one that runs on rechargeable battery. This makes it a flexible choice for vendors, who may be away from direct grid power,” he said.

The battery can be recharged by electricity or solar panels.

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Although sugarcane chewing is better for strong teeth, urban consumers prefer peeled and chopped pieces or ready juice.

Cane lovers who cannot chew can enjoy the juice too.

The juice can be added to medicinal drugs that may not be consumed directly. It is less bulky to transport and can be refrigerated for later consumption. 

PHOTO: Jeff Selembo squeezing juice out of split pieces of sugarcane at Nakuru show ground on July 7, 2016. Minting sugarcane juice can earn up to six times more than direct selling. PHOTO BY LABAN ROBERT.