India's sugar production rose 24 per cent to 23.60 lakh tonnes (LT) in the first two months of the current marketing year on higher output from Maharashtra.
India’s sugar production rose 24 per cent to 23.60 lakh tonnes (LT) in the first two months of the current marketing year on higher output from Maharashtra.
Sugar export from India, the world’s second largest producer and biggest consumer, stood at 1.75 lakh tonnes during the October-November period.
Sugar marketing year runs from October to September.
Releasing the production and exports data of the first two months, Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said the ex-mill sugar prices, which had touched 6-7 year low, have improved by Rs 4-5 per kg, but the rates are still down by Rs 5-6 per kg when compared to the production cost.
“Sugar production till November 30 in the current 2015-16 sugar season is 23.60 lakh tonnes, which is 4.62 lakh tonnes more than the production in the last season up to the same corresponding period when 18.98 lakh tonnes of sugar was produced”, ISMA said in a statement.
India is all set to produce surplus sugar for the sixth straight year at 26-27 million tonnes in this marketing year. To liquidate surplus stock, the government has made it mandatory for mills to export 4 million tonnes this season.
“As per market reports, around 4 lakh tonnes of contracts for exports have been finalised, mostly as white sugar, and around 1.75 lakh tonnes of sugar exports have taken place since October one, 2015”, ISMA said.
According to the data, Maharashtra’s sugar production stood at 12.87 lakh tonnes till November as compared to 11.95 lakh tonnes in the year-ago period.
Sugar output of Uttar Pradesh has increased to 1.8 lakh tonnes against one lakh tonne in the corresponding period of the last marketing year.
In Karnataka, mills have produced 5.68 lakh tonnes during October-November period against 3.2 lakh tonnes in the year- ago period.
On prices, ISMA said the sugar rates, which had fallen till July 2015 in the 2014-15 marketing year and had reached the lowest in the 6-7 years, have improved by Rs 4-5 per kg at the mill gate.
“However, ex-mill sugar prices have stabilised at the current levels in the last 15-20 days. As compared to ex-mill sugar prices prevailing last year at the same time, the current ex-mill prices are still lower by a couple of rupees.
“Further, as compared to cost of production, the current ex-mill prices are still lower by around Rs 5-6 per kg”, ISMA said.
Last month, the Centre decided to pay sugarcane growers Rs 4.50 per quintal for the cane they will sell to loss-making millers, a move costing Rs 1,147 crore to the exchequer.
The decision was hailed by ISMA, which said that millers’ cane price liability would reduce by about Rs 1,100 crore, thus partly compensating their losses.