Sugar production up 13 pc to 305.68 lakh tonnes during Oct'20 – May'21


India’s sugar production rose by 13 per cent to 305.68 lakh tonnes in the first eight months of the current marketing year ending September, mainly due to higher output in Maharashtra, according to trade data. Sugar marketing year runs from October to September.

“Sugar mills across the country have produced 305.68 lakh tonnes of sugar between October 1, 2020 and May 31, 2021,” the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said in a statement.

Sugar production stood at 270.05 lakh tonnes in the year-ago period.

Only seven sugar mills were crushing sugarcane as on May 31 this year primarily in two states — Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

In Uttar Pradesh, sugar production stood at 110.16 lakh tonnes as against 125.46 lakh tonnes in the year-ago period.

In Maharashtra, crushing season has concluded.

Sugar production in the state rose to 106.28 lakh tonnes as against 61.69 lakh tonnes in the corresponding period of the previous year.

In Karnataka, sugar production increased to 41.67 lakh tonnes from 33.80 lakh tonnes.

As per port information and market reports, sugar mills have contracted about 58 lakh tonnes of sugar for exports against the 60 lakh tonnes quota fixed by the government.

“It is also estimated that almost 44-45 lakh tonnes of sugar would have physically got exported out of the country during January, 2021 to May, 2021,” ISMA said.

In addition, the sugar industry had exported 4.48 lakh tonnes of sugar in October – December 2020 quarter against the export quota of last season 2019-20.

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Recently, the government had reduced its assistance in export of sugar from Rs 6,000 to Rs 4,000 per tonne for the 2020-21 marketing year, citing current global market scenario.

ISMA said the mills are also exporting sugar under the Open General License (OGL) and without any government subsidy in order to boost their liquidity.

On the ethanol front, against the total LOI quantity of 346.52 crore litres, 321.18 crore litres have been contracted for and 145.38 crore litres have been supplied as on May 24, 2021.

Out of the total supply so far, about 77 per cent comprises ethanol made from sugarcane juice /B-heavy molasses.

The country, on an average, in the current 2020-21 ethanol marketing year (December to November) has achieved a blending percentage of 7.56 per cent so far.

“We have achieved almost 8 – 10 per cent blending in most of the states except Rajasthan, Kerala, West Bengal, Assam, NE States, Kashmir and Ladakh, not being the main sugar/ethanol producing states as also being far away from the ethanol producing states,” ISMA said.

To achieve the target of 8-8.5 per cent in 2020-21 and move forward to achieve 10 per cent blending, it is important to increase blending level to at least 12 per cent in ethanol surplus states and adjoining states.

Meanwhile, the OMCs (oil marketing companies) have on May 25 floated fresh Expression of Interest (EOI), inviting further bids from ethanol producers for another about 26 crore litres of ethanol in the current year 2020-21, for supplies from June to November.

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