Weaker growth for sugar deliveries to the beverage industry
Until last marketing year, sugar deliveries to the U.S. beverage sector had seen remarkable growth, rising in nine out of the ten years starting in 2006/07. One reason for the trend, unsurprisingly, has been the vogue for “natural” products and the rise in public skepticism over sweeteners that are not perceived as such. Deliveries peaked in 2015/16 just shy of 700,000 short tons (physical)—more than double the volume of deliveries to that sector in the 2000s. That trend was broken in 2016/17, which saw those deliveries fall by 1.5 percent. Curiously, what was seen that year was an exaggerated version of what was seen in other sectors, a decline in use of cane sugar paired with gains for beet sugar. For the beverage sector, cane sugar deliveries fell 12.1 percent, beet sugar rising by the exact same percentage.
With data now available for deliveries in the first four months of 2017/18, the overall decline continues for deliveries to the beverage sector, down 2.3 percent—in this case, thanks to a 4.8 percent fall in beet sugar deliveries while cane sugar deliveries are up a scant tenth of a percent.
Monthly domestic sugar deliveries to the beverage sector
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