Sugar output may drop by 1 mn tonne

August 8th, 2012 - 7:04 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 8 (IANS) India’s sugar output is likely to drop by one million tonne to 25 million tonnes in the marketing year beginning Oct 1 due to poor rainfall in key producing states, especially Maharashtra and Karnataka, the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said Wednesday.

But there will be enough stocks to meet domestic demand, ISMA said.

Sugar production is estimated to drop by 15 percent to 7.6 million tonnes in Maharashtra and by 21 percent to 3 million tonnes in Karnataka in the marketing year 2012-13, ISMA president Gautam Goel told reporters here.

The main reason for this is deficient rainfall in both states. However, the production is estimated to increase in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

In the next marketing year, Uttar Pradesh is likely to emerge as the biggest sugar producer with an estiamted 7.8 million tonnes as compared to 7 million tonnes in the current marketing year.

In the current marketing year, Maharashtra is the top sugar producer with an estimated production of 8.95 million tonnes.

The marketing year for sugar runs from Oct 1 to Sep 30.

As per Indian Meteorological Department data, rainfall is expected to be 15 percent lessr in the June-September quarter.

Goel said the output is estimated to be higher in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu mainly because of increase in areas under sugarcane cultivation.

ISMA director general Abinash Verma said despite the fall in production, sugar output will be more than enough to meet domestic demand.

“There will certainly be surplus sugar production in the next season too. We will not require to import sugar. In fact we will have surplus to export,” he said.

Verma said apart from the estimated 25 million tonnes of output, there will be 6 million tonnes of surplus sugar for next marketing year from the current year.

The estimated consumption is 22 million tonnes. So India will have an exportable surplus of around 9 million tonnes in the year beginning Oct 1, 2012.

Till July 31, in the current season, 25.9 million tonnes of sugar was produced. With 23 sugar mills still crushing sugarcane, total output is estimated to cross 26 million tonnes, ISMA data showed.

As per the agriculture ministry data, the area under sugarcane cultivation is likely to increase by 4 percent to 52.88 lakh hectares in the year beginning Oct 1, as compared to 50.96 lakh hectares in the current year.

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