Sugar accounts for 60% of Belize's agricultural exports. The principal crop is sugar cane which is used for sugar prodution and as a feed stock for ethanol production.
Cane Fields of Northern Belize
Sugar Cane was introduced into Corozal district in 1848 from the Yucatan. After a thriving period in the 19th century, production declined until the erection of the sugar factory at Libertad in 1935.
18th Century Sugar Mill at Lamanai
After 1951, the area used for sugar began to increase. At that time some 2000 acres were planted in cane.
Cutting Cane by Hand in Northern Belize
Today an estimated 40 000 acres in the northern lowlands is reaped each year.
Loading Sugar Cane on Trucks bound for Factory
Sugar production occurs at one factory operated by Belize Sugar Industries, Ltd. The factory is supplied with cane by more than 4000 farmers. These crush the cane to extract the sugar and about eight tons of cane are needed to produce one ton of sugar.
Sugar Factory at Tower Hill, Orange Walk Town