U.S.D.A. sees record U.S. sugar production

by Ron Sterk
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The U.S.D.A. forecast U.S. 2017-18 sugar production at a record 9,230,000 short tons.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture in its Feb. 8 World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report forecast record high U.S. beet and total sugar production in 2017-18, even though forecasts for both were lowered from January.

The U.S.D.A. forecast U.S. 2017-18 sugar production at a record 9,230,000 short tons, raw value, down 82,000 tons from January based on beet sugar at 5,219,000 tons, down 38,000 tons but still record high, and cane sugar at 4,011,000 tons, down 44,000 tons. Florida cane sugar production was forecast at 1,992,000 tons, down 83,000 tons from January, while Louisiana production was seen at a record 1,859,000 tons, up 39,000 tons. If realized, 2017-18 total sugar production would surpass the prior record of 9,032,000 tons in 1999-00.

Forecast 2017-18 imports were unchanged from January at 3,316,000 tons, including imports from Mexico at 1,268,000 tons. Total supply was forecast at 14,422,000 tons, down 57,000 tons from January as lower production was partially offset by higher beginning stocks. Deliveries for food were forecast at 12,325,000 tons, down 75,000 tons from January, with total use down a like amount at 12,580,000 tons. Ending stocks for 2017-18 were forecast at 1,842,000 tons, up 18,000 tons from January. The ending stocks-to-use ratio was raised to 14.6% from 14.4% in January.

The U.S.D.A. estimated 2016-17 sugar ending stocks at 1,876,000 tons, up 25,000 tons from January on a like decrease in sugar deliveries for food, estimated at 12,102,000 tons. The ending stocks-to-use ratio was estimated at 15.1%, up from 14.9% last month.

Supply and use estimates for Mexico were unchanged from January for 2016-17, with only use changed for 2017-18. Domestic use was forecast at 4,886,000 tonnes, actual weight, down 86,000 tonnes from January, with exports forecast at 1,362,000 tonnes, up 105,000 tonnes, all for non-U.S. destinations. Ending stocks were forecast at 989,000 tonnes, down 19,000 tonnes from January
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