WASHINGTON — The US Department of Agriculture in the Sept. 10 Federal Register announced an increase in raw sugar tariff-rate quota imports, extension of the sugar import entry period for fiscal 2020 (2019-20) and reassignment of surplus domestic sugar marketing allocations.

“These actions are being taken after a determination that additional supplies of raw cane sugar are required in the US market,” the USDA said.

The USDA will continue to monitor sugar stocks, consumption and imports among other variables and may make other adjustments if needed.

The raw sugar TRQ was increased by 90,718 tonnes, raw value, (100,000 short tons), raising the overall 2020 raw sugar TRQ to 1,525,428 tonnes (1,681,496 short tons). The initial TRQ was set at the World Trade Organization minimum of 1,117,195 tonnes on June 27, 2019, and was raised by 317,515 tonnes on April 3, 2020. The office of the US Trade Representative will allocate the increase among exporting countries.

Further, all sugar entering the United States under the 2020 raw sugar TRQ will be permitted to enter US Customs territory through Oct. 31, a month after the end of the fiscal year on Sept. 30.

The USDA also reassigned surplus beet sugar marketing allocations among beet sugar processors of 130,000 tons, raw value, to raw cane sugar imports already anticipated. In addition to the 100,000-ton TRQ increase, the USDA also reassigned 100,000 tons of surplus cane sugar marketing allocations among cane sugar processors to raw cane sugar imports already anticipated.

In its US Sugar Monthly Import and Re-Exports report, USDA data showed that raw sugar TRQ imports through August were estimated at only 79% of the USDA projection for the year with 92% of the sugar marketing year elapsed.