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Indian Sugar Output Down by 3.45 Per Cent

12 May 2014

INDIA - Indian sugar production has recorded a 3.45 per cent decrease at 23.7 million tonnes during 2013-14 sugar season (October-September) period ended 30 April.

During the same period last year, sugar production was recorded at 24.6 million tonnes, Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said in a statement.

Sugar season 2013-14 has almost come to an end with only about 80 sugar mills operating on 30th April 2014, ISMA statement adds.

The association also said that cane arrears will increase to $2 billion due to falling prices and the government's delay in fixing the subsidy for export of raw sugar. The arrears are 20 per cent of the total cane price payable in the current season.

Currently, cane arrears have crossed $1.66 billion the highest ever. With sugar prices again falling quite fast in the last fortnight, the chances of cane price arrears getting cleared early seems remote, the association said.

Sanction and disbursement of the interest free loans is also slow and only about 50 per cent of the intended loans have been received by the mills, delaying clearance of arrears of farmers.

The raw sugar production incentive and exports thereof has also not given the desired benefits to the millers and the farmers, when against the targeted export of 4 million tonnes, only about 300,000 tonnes to 400,000 tonnes has got exported.

During the period, Maharashtra produced 7.65 million tonnes of sugar after crushing 67.1 million tonnes of sugar with 11.4% of sugar recovery. As on April 30, 2014, only 15 mills were still crushing sugarcane are mostly located in Kolhapur & Pune zone.

During same period last year, sugar production was at 7.98 million tonnes with same sugar recovery as that of current year.

Uttar Pradesh crushed 69.2 million tonnes of sugarcane to produce about 6.41 million tonnes of sugar with 9.27 per cent of sugar recovery, as compared to 7.48 million tonnes produced with 9.18 per cent of sugar recovery during the same period last year. Only 10 sugar mills are still crushing which are mostly in western zone of Uttar Pradesh.

Karnataka produced the highest ever sugar till date, which is at 4.17 million tonnes of sugar production, at 10.99 per cent of sugar recovery, against 3.4 million tonnes during the last year period. Millers are not expecting much sugar production in special season, which usually happens in August and September.

Gujarat produced 1.18 million tonnes of sugar, which is about four per cent high than last year’s total sugar production. All mills have already closed for the season.

Andhra Pradesh has produced 990,000 tonnes of sugar with 10 per cent of sugar recovery. However, AP has already touched its last year’s level of sugar production and soon all mills will close in a week time.

Tamil Nadu which has produced 1.08 million tonnes of sugar up to 30 April, which is about 30 per cent less than last year’s sugar production during same period.

ISMA also cited that delay in sugar exports incentive notification is also keeping Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu millers in uncertainty, who still have raw sugar stocks of about 600,000 tonnes, at the end of March.

Several export contracts which were finalized with the expectation of $54.98 per ton of incentives are not getting executed, burdening the domestic market with some extra sugar.

TheCropSite News Desk

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