The surplus production of sugar during the current sugar season has resulted in depressed sugar prices, which are adversely affecting the realisation by the sugar mills from sale of sugar in the open market. Low realisation from the sale of sugar in the country during sugar season (SS) 2017-18 resulted in accumulation of cane price arrears.
In order to check the continuous fall in the prices of sugar and stabilise them with a view to clear cane price arrears of farmers, the government has taken several measures, including fixing the minimum selling price (MSP) for the sale of sugar at factory gate at Rs 29 per kg; imposition of stock holding limits on sugar mills, and creation of a buffer stock of 30 lakh million tonne (LMT).
With a view to monitor the implementation of imposition of stock holding limits on sugar mills, along with the implementation of the Minimum Selling Price (Control) Order, to ensure that sugar is not sold below the MSP of Rs 29 per kg (Rs 2,900 per quintal) at the factory gate, and to monitor the maintenance of buffer stock by the sugar mills, the Department of Food and Public Distribution (DFPD)/the Directorate of Sugar and Vegetable Oils (DSVO), has deputed its officials for making periodic visits to the sugar factories to check the stocks, prices at which sugar has been sold by the sugar mills and to check the buffer stock and the quality of sugar kept as buffer by the sugar mills throughout India.
Three teams, each comprising two officials of DFPD/DSVO, were deputed to visit sugar mills of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Maharashtra, respectively, and inspected a total of 18 sugar mills in these states.
As per reports of the visiting inspecting teams, compliance and cooperation, by and large, by all the mills is reported.
The Government of India is hopeful that with the cooperation of sugar mills and the state governments concerned, various measures taken by the Government will succeed in stabilizing the sugar prices and improving liquidity position of mills enabling them to clear cane price arrears of farmers.