Trends in the Caribbean Sugar Industry
The nature of the sugar industry in the Caribbean has changed throughout the years. Generally, The importance of sugarcane has decreased. Some small countries have stopped producing sugar for export while others have greatly reduced sugar production.
In the past, Caribbean countries relied very heavily on sugar exports. This meant that changes in the price of sugar had a great effect on these territories. The extensive cultivation of sugarcane also meant that there was less land available to produce food for local use. In recent times, Caribbean countries have made a greater effort to diversify. These territories have explored other export crops. They are also growing more food and rearing more livestock for local markets.
Other uses of sugarcane are being explored in the region. One such use is the production of ethanol, which can be mixed with gasoline. This mixture can be used to run motor vehicles. The video below shows how Brazil has greatly reduced its need to import fuel by producing ethanol. Cuba is trying to do the same.