Our Environmental Policy establishes guiding principles and other commitments, including;

  • Complying with all relevant environmental legislation, policies and codes of practice
  • Setting objectives and targets and measuring our performance
  • Maximising the use and reuse of resources, wastes and energy
  • Implementing measures that reduce pollution and impacts on the environment and community

View our Environment Policy

Consistent with our policy objectives more than 95% of the energy consumed by mills to process sugar cane is generated from bagasse, a fibrous waste by-product of the sugar cane crushing process. Considered a carbon neutral renewable source of energy it is fed into a biomass boiler to produce steam and electricity.
Being 100% Australian owned, Sunshine Sugar is very proud to be the first refined sugar producer in the world to be awarded Bonsucro certification. Bonsucro promotes a global standard for improving the social, environmental and economic sustainability of sugar cane production and processing in order to contribute to a more sustainable future. We are also the only sugar milling and refining company 100% certified which means even farming practices of growers are certified encouraging sustainable farming and communities.

NSW is unique in that much of the cane (up to 75%) is cut at two years old. Due to our temperate climate, the two-year-old cane is high yielding, carries a significant trash load and is usually sprawled or fallen over. When these heavy crops are harvested green the very thick trash blanket left on the soil surface has been proven to having a significant negative impact on productivity because soil temperatures are lowered which inhibits re-growth (ratooning) of the cane crop.

Burning of cane prior to harvest remains the only viable option in NSW. It is one of the most onerous tasks that cane farmers have to do – it is dirty, dangerous work that usually has to be done late at night or very early in the morning.

Cane farmers have the legal right to burn cane. Burning of cane falls under the provisions of the Rural Fires Act 1997 and the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

View our information sheet The Burning Question

Mill Mud and Boiler Waste Resource Recovery

The boiler ash and mill mud produced from sugar cane by-products are recycled by incorporating them back into agricultural soils to provide valuable nutrients and improve the structure of soils. They are also used to make compost. Waste Resource Recovery Approvals have been obtained from the NSW EPA to permit the reuse of these by-products.

The conditions under an exemption applies to consumers and the sugar mills have to comply with the order. Copies of these are available below:

Environmental Monitoring

Pollution Incident Response Management

Each licenced site has a Pollution Incident Response Management Plan to assist in minimising the potential for harm in the event of a significant incident – View Sunshine Sugar Pollution Incident Response Plan

Environmental Enquiries and Public Complaints

For environmental enquiries or complaints, please call the relevant site number below and leave your name, contact information and some details concerning your enquiry or complaint. A representative will be assigned to respond as soon as possible.

  • Condong Sugar Mill (Tweed Valley) – 02 6670 1747
  • Broadwater Sugar Mill (Richmond Valley) – 02 6620 8244
  • Harwood Sugar Mill & Refinery (Clarence Valley) – 02 6640 0491

Other sustainable practices in Business

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