The cane industry is owned by the South African sugar association which is one of the biggest cooperatives in the world. Some of it is grown by prosperous farmers.
- For large-scale growing, the land is ploughed and reploughed using machinery, manual labor, and adding of fertilizers
- Canes are chopped with disinfected knives in the length of 40 cm and then immersed in hot water of 50°C killing disease vectors for two hours
- The cane is then planted at staggered intervals so as to ensure all-year production
- Freshly planted cane takes 18 to 20 months before harvesting
- Harvesting is done for around 9 months between May and December when sucrose is very high by chopping down the stem but leaving the roots to re-grow best done during the dry season for about 11 months
- After harvesting the cane leaves are removed and the cane tied in bundles to the processing factory
- Cut leaves are spread on the ground of the sugarcane plantation to avoid loss of moisture and land is left to fallow or regain its fertility