Sugar production till December 31 at 77.95 lakh tonnes: ISMA

New Delhi: According to the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA), 437 sugar mills which were in operation in the country as on 31st December 2019 have produced 77.95 lakh tonnes of sugar, as compared to 111.72 lakh tonnes produced by 507 sugar mills as on 31st December 2018. This is 33.77 lakh tonnes lower as compared to last season’s production for the corresponding period.

In Maharashtra, 137 sugar mills, which are in operation, have produced 16.50 lakh tonnes till 31st December, 2019, as against 187 sugar mills which had produced 44.57 lakh tonnes last year upto same period. From the beginning of the season and till 31st December, 2019, average sugar recovery % in the State stands at 10% as against 10.5% achieved for the corresponding period of 2018-19. This is because a part of the crushing includes the flood affected sugarcane, which lost some of its sucrose because it was waterlogged for some time. As per reports of Commissioner (Sugar), Maharashtra, two sugar mills, one in Ahmednagar and another in Aurangabad District have closed their operations mainly due to non-availability of labour for harvesting and less availability of sugarcane.

In Uttar Pradesh, 119 sugar mills have produced 33.16 lakh tonnes till 31st December, 2019, with an average recovery of 10.71%. In the last 2018-19 SS, 117 sugar mills were in operation on 31st December, 2018 and they had produced 31.07 lakh tonnes of sugar with an average recovery of 10.84%. About 18 to 20 sugar mills are also diverting ‘B’ heavy molasses for production of ethanol.

63 sugar mills in Karnataka are in operation on 31st December, 2019, who have produced 16.33 lakh tonnes of sugar, as compared to 21.03 lakh tonnes produced by 65 sugar mills in 2018-19 SS on 31st December, 2018.

In Gujarat, 15 sugar mills are operating for 2019-20 SS and they have produced 2.65 lakh tonnes of sugar till 31st December, 2019. In 2018-19 SS, 16 sugar mills were in operation on 31st December, 2018, who had produced 4.29 lac tons of sugar till that date.

In Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, 18 sugar mills have produced 96000 tons of sugar till 31st December, 2019 and this is about 1 lakh tonnes less than the sugar produced by 24 mills in 2018-19 SS till 31st December, 2018.

In Tamil Nadu, 16 sugar mills are in operation as compared to 27 mills operated on 31st December last year. Sugar mills in Tamil Nadu have produced about 95000 tons of sugar till 31st December 2019 as against 1.51 lakh tonnes produced last year on the corresponding date.

Mills of Bihar have produced 2.33 lakh tonnes, Haryana 1.35 lakh tonnes, Punjab 1.60 lakh tonnes, Uttarakhand 1.06 lakh tonnes and Madhya Pradesh 1 lakh tonne, till 31st December 2019.

Based on satellite images of the cane area remaining to be harvested, trend of recovery, yield and drawal percentage of sugarcane achieved so far, ISMA will come out with its second advance estimates of sugar production for 2019-20 SS in February 2020.

From the beginning of the sugar season and till now, ex-mill sugar prices have remained steady in the range of Rs. 3250-3350 per quintal in Northern India and Rs. 3100-3250 in the Southern Region.

Since Central Government has not increased the FRP for 2019-20 SS as also the State Governments like Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Punjab have not hiked the State Advised Price and ex-mill prices remain stable, sugar mills are in a better position to be able to pay cane price to the farmers on time.

As per market information, over 25 lakh tonnes of export contracts against MAEQ has taken place. Physical exports are happening at a good pace. The Government is in the process of reviewing actual exports made by mills against MAEQ during October–December 2019 quarter, and as already announced in the policy, reallocate the unexported MAEQ to the sugar mills who have exported and are willing to take additional quota beyond their MAEQ. Reallocation of unexported MAEQ/additional allocation of quotas to the willing sugar mills will help in achieving the MAEQ target during 2019-20 SS.

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