Another uptick for Asia’s 2017/18 sugar production
Thanks to favorable weather and gains in planted hectarage, forecast 2017/18 sugar output must again be raised for several Asian origins. India has shaken off the last effects of drought for some states, and this season the government’s concerns over prior volatility in domestic sugar supply and prices helped support output and prompted an early start to the crush campaign. All the above factors have led to a 2017/18 output forecast of 33.1 MMT, up considerably from the initial forecast of 26.4 MMT and well above drought-stricken 2016/17 output of 21.7 MMT.
Thanks to planting gains against competing crops like rice, Thailand’s 2017/18 output is now pegged near 13.4 MMT. Its annual production had peaked in 2014/15 at 12.1 MMT, but lingering drought conditions had pressured output in the previous two seasons to multiyear lows near 10.0 MMT. Output may gain modestly next season.
Net-importer China also saw output fall in the last two seasons, but a recovery of at least 1.0 MMT is expected—down slightly from some earlier forecasts. Australia, however, will see its output fall below 5.0 MMT, down from the last two seasons but still strong historically.
Major Asian origins, sugar production history
Source: McKeany-Flavell, trade sources
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