Sugar output in the 2022/23 season in Brazil, the world’s largest producer and exporter, is seen growing 15% to 40.28 million tonnes as fields partially recover from the harsh 2021 drought, government agency Conab said on Wednesday.
In its first projection for the new season that started in April, Conab said it expects a total sugarcane crop in Brazil, including both Center-South and Northeast regions, of 596 million tonnes, 1.9% above 2021/22.
Total ethanol output, including fuel produced from sugarcane and corn, was seen at 28.65 billion liters, 5.3% less than in the previous season as Conab sees a smaller amount of cane being used to produce ethanol, with more going to sugar production, a view that contrasts with some private forecasts.
The agency projected that mills in the country will earmark 7.9% less sugarcane for ethanol production, despite the larger crop, adding that many companies already closed export contracts and now must produce more sugar to fulfill their commitments.
Conab expects mills to use 14% more cane for sugar production compared with the previous season.
While total volume of cane is seen growing due to better weather, total planted area is projected to fall again as it did in the previous crop.
The agency estimated a reduction of 1.3% in the area, to 8.2 million hectares.
“The large interest from farmers to plant more soybeans and corn was the main reason why sugarcane area fell, despite a positive outlook for the sugar and ethanol sector,” Conab said.
Meanwhile, India’s sugar exports surged by 64.9 per cent to $4.6 billion in the financial year 2021-22 from $2.79 billion recorded in the previous year, according to the latest government data.
Consequently, to ensure that only serious project proponents are issued in-principle approval by the Department of Food and Public Distribution (DFPD), the window has been opened for inviting fresh applications from those project proponents who have acquired land for project and obtained environmental clearance.