The government of Puerto Rico is incentivising the local rum producer Serralles Distillery to set up a sugar plant on the site of the old mill in Mercedita which closed down in 1994, said the governor Alejandro García Padilla, according to local press reports.
Under the scheme sugarcane plantations and the sugar factory will be developed over a period of five years. Since 22 January 2014, the government has invested around US$9 mln in sugarcane production in the Valle del Coloso in Aguada.
Serralles, which produces around 45.5 million litres of rum per year, will take over the project, investing of approximately US$ 40 million for both cane production and the sugar factory. Roberto Serralles, vice president of Business Development Serralles Distillery confirmed this during a press conference.
The new mill will be able to cover 60% of molasses requirements for the Serralles distillery, with the rest coming from Central America and the Caribbean.
Serralles will oversee the planting and harvesting of sugar cane, expanding cane acreage from 900 to 12,000 ha.
The government, through the Industrial Development Company, granted the distillery US$ 5 million through Law 73 job creation and retention. It also made available US$ 5 million for infrastructure investment.
The Department of Agriculture also granted the distillery US$ 250,000 annually under the Investment Program.
International Sugar Journal