The sugar mills in Guatemala began the Zafra season 2019/20 which means that sugarcane is harvested for the production of sugar, energy and alcohol for seven months, during which time 1.8 million people benefit with the jobs generated by the Guatemalan Sugar Industry
Zafra promotes economic recovery in the South of Guatemala, due to the generation of jobs and the hiring of thousands of suppliers of products and services, who also become employers and multiply the opportunities for the local population. During the recent Zafra (2018/19), 56,000 direct and 280,000 indirect jobs were generated.
The sugar mills part of the Guatemalan Sugar Association–Asazgua- operate under a strict labor policy and distribute each year around US$400 million in wages and salaries, in addition to programs to provide health, entertainment and food services to their collaborators. In a study by the Sugar Association, the sugar footprint of Guatemala reaches all the regions of the country.
In Guatemala there are 11 sugar mills for the production of sugar, and also they generate renewable energy, which during the previous Zafra covered up to 31% of the national demand. They also produce alcohol that is mainly exported to the United States and Europe.
During the 2018/19 harvest, 2.9 million metric tons of sugar were produced, of which 70 percent was exported to 58 countries in the world. These exports, added to those of alcohol and molasses, represent 7 percent of the country’s exports, according to figures from the Bank of Guatemala (Central Bank). For this year the production projection is maintained.
Guatemala is the second sugar exporter in Latin America and the fourth worldwide; Guatemala also has the third place in productivity worldwide with respect to obtaining sugar per hectare cultivated.