No sugar in Cuba?
Years ago, my mother got a letter from her sister in Cuba complaining about the lack of food, and specially seafood. So my mother said to her Cuban friend, "Can you believe that? No fish in Cuba."
And her friend said, "How can that be? It's an island. I remember going fishing and catching everything."
And my mother responded, "Yes, I remember that, too. But this is 'Cuba comunista,' and the fish have all gone to Miami."
I wonder what my late mother would say about the shortage of sugar in Cuba. Yes, there is not enough sugar in Cuba today.
This is the report via my friends at Babalu Blog:
The production of the 2021–2022 sugar harvest was the lowest in the last 150 years: only 480,000 tons of sugar, not even covering the average annual consumption on the island, which is around 600,000 tons. Of the 35 sugar mills that participated in the harvest, which ended on May 20, only three fulfilled their production plan.
"We don't even have sugar at the bodegas," says Alexis, the manager of one in El Cerro.
Once upon a time, Cuba had no problems growing sugarcane, turning it into sugar for domestic consumption or exports. It was a foregone conclusion that every Cuban would sweeten his strong coffee and light up a cigar, something I saw my father do often. I can still smell my mother's Cuban coffee and my father's cigar!
That was then, and this is now, according to Reuters:
Cuba's emblematic sugar harvest topped out at just over half of the communist-run government's target this year, according state-run newspaper Granma, representing another major blow to the country's already crisis-racked economy.
That 2021–2022 harvest hit just 52% of the goal for the season, Granma said, or approximately 474,000 tons. That is nearly half of last year's crop of 800,000 tonnes, which was already the worst since 1908.
So what went wrong? The answer is that these sugar mills were once privately run and incredibly efficient. Today, they are state-run and incredibly inefficient.
It's as simple as that! Welcome to socialism!
Editor's note: Here is what Cuba's inflation looks like:
The U.S. haters will blame the embargo. What's new? The embargo does not stop Cuba from selling sugar to any country or attracting investment to improve the sugar mills. Don't blame the embargo.
Last, but not least, once upon a time, Havana had a professional minor league baseball team called The Sugar Kings. They were an AAA team in the Cincinnati Reds organization. They were called the Sugar Kings because sugar is one of the symbols of Cuba.
Well, the fish moved to Miami, as my mother said. Maybe the sugarcane did, too!
Image: Pixabay, Pixabay License.