Drought to trim India's sugar production below consumption
- IPL spot-fixing case: Actor Vindoo Dara Singh arrested
- IPL 2013: Final No.5 for MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings
- Pune Warriors withdraw from IPL, 'disgusted' by BCCI's attitude
- IPL spot fixing: Accused Sreesanth claims innocence
- Li Keqiang visits TCS, Cyrus P Mistry says China important for growth of Tata Group
India's sugar production for the 2013/14 season is set to fall below consumption for the first time in four years as a water shortage trims acreage in three key states.
The drop could boost global sugar prices as the world's top sugar consumer imports raw sugar to maintain stocks and to take advantage of lower prices in Brazil.
"Farmers in Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are switching to other crops. If we look at prices, cane is attractive, but water is not available," said a Mumbai-based official with a global trading firm, who declined to be named.
Figures from the Indian Sugar Mills Association show that the western state of Maharashtra and southern Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are likely to produce 12.2 million tonnes, or more than half of India's total production, in the 2012/13 season, which ends on Sept. 30.
India, the world's biggest sugar producer after Brazil, is likely to produce a total of 24.3 million tonnes of sugar in the current year, compared with demand of about 23 million tonnes.
It would then need imports over the following season to maintain opening stock levels for the year starting Oct. 1, 2014, dealers said.
Though the country is likely to start the year starting October 2013 with stocks of 7.5 million tonnes, it would want to maintain these levels going into the next year.
After the 2009 drought sugar production fell sharply, forcing India to make big purchases from overseas markets, which pushed the price of raw sugar futures to 30-year highs.
"It is difficult to estimate sugar output for next year. It depends on the diversion of cane for fodder, monsoon rains and recovery rate," said the trading firm official, who declined to be named. "Right now, we can say around 20-21 million tonnes can be produced."
- 'Sophisticated' Indian cyberattacks targeted Pak military sites: Report
- Talkative Li quoted Weber, Hegel, Jobs, said PM is large-hearted
- Bihar food corp ends up with chaff as rice worth Rs 535 cr vanishes from mills
- In 7 lucrative minutes on May 9, Sreesanth bowled 6 balls, bookie made Rs 2.5 cr
- India and China ask border envoys to work on more steps
- Former Ranji player among 3 more held