INDIA: Sugar production at 29.9 million tonnes through April 15
Published: 04/17/2018, 1:41:57 PM
India has produced 29.9 million metric tonnes sugar as of April 15 during the current October-September 2017/18 season, the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said on Tuesday, according to India's IANS news agency.
"Sugar production in the current season up to April 15, has crossed the expected levels and the Indian sugar industry has already produced 29.9 million tonnes," ISMA said in a statement, adding that, "the actual sugar production up to April 15 is already 5 million tonnes more than the estimated sugar consumption for the whole season up to September 30".
Out of the total 524 sugar mills which operated in the ongoing season, 227 were crushing sugarcane as on April 15, it said.
The major producers -- Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka -- have so far produced 10.498 million tonnes, 10.48 million tonnes and 3.63 million tonnes, the data showed.
"Since 227 sugar mills are still crushing sugarcane, there will be a further addition to the stocks which will only increase the surplus sugar availability over and above the domestic requirement," the statement said.
The association further said that due to the high stocks, the market price of the sweetener across the country is lower by around INR8 (US$0.12) per kilogram than the production cost.
According to ISMA, sugar mills have been unable to pay cane prices to farmers due to the depressed sugar prices.
"As on March 15, the cane price arrears reported to the government was already over INR180 billion across the country. Since the sugar prices have only fallen from therein, the cane price arrears would have crossed INR200 billion, which would be the highest ever at this time in any of the past seasons."