0802 GMT January 20, 2022
Talking to Iran Daily, Habib Eslami added that over 50 percent of the union members are not equipped with modern technology, as they need governmental support for upgrading their equipment.
Referring to the effects of COVID-19 on the activities of his union, he said that this pandemic has led to the closure of about 30 percent of production units in this field.
“Iran’s rock sugar has many customers in the region who purchase the commodity in bulk, repackage it and sell it with added profit,” he said, adding that producers must move towards packaging their goods in different weight packages.
“The byproducts of a rock candy production line can be used to manufacture chocolate and other types of candy, effectively turning what would be production waste to profit,” Eslami said.
Eslami noted that Iraq, Afghanistan and Azerbaijan are the main export destinations of Iranian rock sugar and candy products, adding that Iran has plans to cover more target markets in the region.
The elimination of subsidized forex, which was dedicated for imports of sugar, has resulted in a notable hike in prices for Iranian production units, he said, noting that this problem has deprived Iranian producers of the development of candy exports.
Eslami stated: “Sanctions have increased production problems in the country, yet on the other hand, we have deprived ourselves from production.”
We have restricted the import of raw materials that we could easily buy, and this has led to an increase in prices in the domestic market, he continued.
He asked for some facilitation in paying taxes for members of the union, adding that many Iranian production units are in dire need of government support during the coronavirus pandemic.
“Unfortunately, the previous government did not provide any services or facilities to the producers of this union, and they even created problems for producers; for example, about 250 tons of citric acid as raw material in the country are needed per day by production plants, while there is only one citric acid factory active in the country, with a daily capacity of 30 tons,” Eslami criticized.
He said the price of citric acid has increased by 400 percent in recent years.
“Another issue that has provided major barriers for the industry is energy companies, whose high prices for electricity, water and gas have led to increased costs for manufactured products,” Eslami noted.
Rock sugar, or crystal sugar, is a type of confection composed of relatively large sugar crystals. This candy is formed by allowing a supersaturated solution of sugar and water to crystallize onto a surface suitable for crystal nucleation, such as a string, stick, or plain granulated sugar. Heating the water before adding the sugar allows more sugar to dissolve, thus producing larger crystals. This sweet additive is highly in demand in Asia, as it is often dissolved in tea in Iran and China, and consumed as a common candy or mouth freshener in India.