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Crushing blow! Sugar production declines 35% to 4.58 mt till Dec 15

The higher output during the current season could be possible as mills started their crushing operations one week earlier than the year-ago period

Sugar production for the period ended December 15, 2019 in the current season (October-September) has declined by 35% to 4.58 million tonne as compared to 7.05 million tonne produced in the corresponding period of last season.

During the said period, there were 406 sugar mills involved in crushing sugarcane as against 473 mills which were operating in the same period last season, said Indian Sugar Mills’ Association (Isma).

In Uttar Pradesh, 119 mills have produced 2.12 milliontonne till December 15, 2019, which was 2.31 lakh tonne higher than last year, where 116 sugar mills had together produced 18.94 lakh tonne.

The higher production during the current season could be possible as mills started their crushing operations one week earlier than corresponding period.

In Maharashtra, 124 sugar mills were in operation and they produced 7.66 lakh tonne of sugar till December 15, 2019 as against 178 mills which together had produced 29 lakh tonne in the same period last season.

In Karnataka, the third largest producer of sugar, there were 63 mills in operation who have produced 10.62 lakh tonne till December 15. This is about 3.32 lakh tonne less sugar produced as on the same time of last season, said a press release on Wednesday.

The production in Maharashtra and Karnataka were lower than last year due to the fact that mills in these states started late by one month and one week, respectively. Apart from this, sugar recovery so far is reported to be lower as compared to last year, mainly because mills were crushing damaged sugarcane due to floods, along with the fresh cane as also other climatic factors.

As regards Gujarat, 15 sugar mills were in operation and they produced 1.52 lakh tonne as compared to 16 mills which together produced 3.10 lakh tonne in the same period last sugar season.

In Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, 14 sugar mills could start crushing till December 15, 2019 and they produced about 30,000 tonne. Last year, 18 sugar mills were in operation and they had produced 1.05 lakh tonne.

There were 6 sugar mills in operation in Tamil Nadu and sugar production was about 73,000 tonne as compared to 87,000 tonne produced by 16 sugar mills as on December 15, 2018. With regard to Bihar, Punjab, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh, there were 9, 16, 13 and 19 sugar mills, respectively in operations and they produced 1.35 lakh tonne, 75,000 tonne, 65,000 tonne and 35,000 tonne, respectively.

According to Isma, against the two tenders floated by OMCs for ethanol procurement during the Ethanol Supply Year (December 2019 – November 2020), sugar mills and standalone distilleries have offered to supply 163 crore litres of ethanol, out of which 10.38 crore litres will be from sugarcane juice, 62.58 crore litres from ‘B’ heavy molasses, 86.39 crore litres from ‘C’ heavy molasses and 3.78 crore litres from damaged foodgrains.

The supply of ethanol of about 73 crore litres from sugarcane juice and ‘B’ heavy molasses is almost double that of what was supplied in the last 2018-19 ESY, and, therefore, the diversion of sugar into ethanol this season is higher.

There is another tender expected shortly from the OMCs, against which more quantities of ethanol including the ethanol made from ‘B’ heavy molasses and sugarcane juice, is expected to be offered to the OMCs for 2019-20 ESY.

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Source: Financial Express