Real time sugar output projection: Online registration of sugarcane farmers in Maharashtra, Karnataka from next season

In the ongoing season, India has experienced inaccurate forecasts as the country has reported higher than expected sugar production. Due to projections of lower sugar production, the government has limited sugar diversion for ethanol production and restricted sugar exports. Consequently, there is a pressing need for accurate forecasts. In response, the government is formulating strategies to ensure precise production estimations.

As per news report published in Financial Express, the Food Ministry is set to introduce online registration for sugarcane farmers in key producing states of Maharashtra and Karnataka starting from the 2024-25 season, aiming for a more accurate projection of sugar production.

Sources familiar with the matter said that a state-specific portal will facilitate the registration of farmers’ details along with the mills intending to purchase sugarcane. This move aims to enable real-time tracking of sugar output well in advance.

An official from the Food Ministry emphasised that the registration of farmers would aid in estimating output and assessing supplies ahead of time. Currently, Uttar Pradesh operates an online enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, managing sugar production and supply to mills through the mobile app e-Ganna, serving sugarcane farmers in the state.

The official further stated, “Once sugarcane farmers and mills in the three key states are registered, the advance projection of production and supplies would be more robust.”

Ravi Gupta, Executive Director of Shree Renuka Sugars, while speaking to Chinimandi, said, “The primary challenge in forecasting India’s sugar production lies in Maharashtra and Karnataka. Farmers often register sugarcane with multiple factories, resulting in double accounting and inaccurate forecasts. Implementing E-registration could significantly improve accuracy by facilitating precise tracking, and for the future, it shall also help in better implementation of farm schemes.”

Recently, Indian Sugar & Bio-energy Manufacturers Association (ISMA) has revised its all-India sugar production estimate for 2023-24 Sugar Season (before diversion into ethanol) as 340 lakh tonnes, against its earlier estimate of 330.5 lakh tonnes released in January, 2024.

According to data released by ISMA, sugar production till 15th March, 2024 in the current 2023-24 season reached 280.79 lakh tonnes, against 282.60 lakh tonnes produced last year on the corresponding date.


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