Universal Robina Corp. Sugar & Renewables (URC SURE) has added a seventh sugar mill and a second ethanol plant after officially closing this week a deal to buy the assets of Roxas Holdings Inc. in La Carlota City, Negros Occidental.
Central Azucarera de la Carlota Inc (CACI) and Roxol Bioenergy Corp. are now known as URC La Carlota and URC La Carlota Distillery, respectively.
URC La Carlota started operations last Oct 5.
In an earlier disclosure, URC said the acquisition “will create synergies” in the sugar industry in Negros Occidental. “This transaction is expected to enhance the capability of URC to provide good milling services to sugarcane planters,” it stated.
URC SURE Managing Director Rene Cabati said that this acquisition can help sugarcane planters increase their productivity, which can translate into more opportunities for local communities in Negros Occidental.
“This will also allow the company to continue supporting the development of the sugar industry in the country,” he added.
CACI is the country’s second-biggest raw sugar miller, with a rated capacity of 15,000 tons of cane per day.
The sugar mill was established in 1916 by the Elizalde and Ynchausti families at Hacienda Esperanca in La Carlota, at the foot of Mt. Kanlaon.
Starting with two crushers and nine rolls, CACI expanded in 1925 to three mills.
After World War II, it added three more mills. Modernization continued in the 1970s with the installation of a Farrel mill that increased milling capacity to about 10,000 tons per day. That turned CAC into one of the biggest raw sugar mills in the Far East.
In 1995, Central Azucarera Don Pedro (CADP), under the Roxas Group, took over the management of
CACI, with substantial investments spent to rehabilitate and improve the mills, boilers, process house and other facilities.
The improvements included the installation of a shredder to increase capacity and sugar extraction, a continuous vacuum pan and vertical crystallizer, and centrifugal equipment to improve boiling house recovery. Laboratory facilities were also upgraded to enhance the accuracy of sugar analysis and accounting and pollution control facilities.
The initiative resulted in higher milling efficiency and manufacturing recoveries that eventually led to the all-time high production of almost 3.25 million (50 kilogram) bags in crop Year 2019-2020.
Roxol Bioenergy is an integrated sugar mill and bio-ethanol distillery complex that produces bio-ethanol fuel products from sugarcane and related raw materials, renewable and alternative energy resources.
It was constructed in 2009 and started its operation in 2010. It has a rated capacity of 150,000 liters of fuel ethanol or potable and industrial alcohol per day.
The sugar manufacturing arm of URC, URC SURE is composed of two groups. Its Sugar Division operates six mills with a combined milling capacity of 35,000 tons of sugarcane per day. Its Renewable Energy Division operates a 100,000-liters-per-day fuel ethanol plant and CO2 plant in Bais City, Negros Oriental and a 20-megawatt Biomass Fired Power Plant in Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental.