Crop over or Crop-Over? There was once a time when the “crop season” attracted the attention of just about every Barbadian.
From the cane cutters and the women “heading” bundles of the stalks from the field up wooden ladders to the back of trucks and trailers, to the sweet scent of “crack liquor” filling the atmosphere, it was impossible to miss the fact that the harvest was on.
There was also the precise sounding of the horn at the factories by which many a household kept time for up to five months, while children perfected the art of running beside moving trucks while “begging” the man perched on top to throw them a piece of two, which they then peeled with their teeth before sucking their stomachs full.
Those were the good old days when the turbines screamed at Porters in St. James, Hayman’s in St. Peter, Bulkeley in St. George, Andrew’s in St. Joseph and Carrington in St. Philip, among other locations.
Today with just Portvale, St. James and Andrew’s working to grind less than 20,000 tonnes of sugar, it is possible to complete an entire harvest almost unnoticed. In fact, when a Barbados TODAY team visited Andrew’s Sugar Factory this afternoon one could almost hear a pin drop — were it not for the few tractors dumping loads onto the conveyor belt this afternoon. Andrew’s was a shadow of its old self!
Much like the entire industry these days. (KC)