Uttar Pradesh is likely to witness 20 per cent lower sugar production for the on-going cane crushing season compared with the previous season. The largest sugar producing state in the country is likely to produce 100 lakh tonne sugar as against 126 lakh tonne in the last season.
The lower sugar production is attributed to the diversion of cane for ethanol production and damage of crops due to pest infection following the rainwater stagnation in sugarcane fields in central and eastern parts of the state.
The sugar industry body ISMA had predicted the sugar output to be around 105 lakh tonne, but field reports suggest that the number is expected to fall further due to a lower than expected recovery and yield.
A sugar miller from UP said, “Sugar mills in the UP are closing crushing operations due to shortage of cane. Four mills have closed and others will follow soon.”
According to the news report published in Financial Express, of the total 20 lakh tonne sugar that is expected to be diverted into ethanol in the country, almost 6.76 lakh tonne will be from Uttar Pradesh, followed by 6.54 lakh tonne in Maharashtra and 5.41 lakh tonne in Karnataka.