WASHINGTON — The US Department of Agriculture in its Sept. 12 World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report forecast lower ending stocks for 2021-22 (current marketing year that ends Sept. 30) and made changes for 2022-23 in part to adjust the ending stocks-to-use ratio to 13.5% as outlined in the US-Mexico suspension agreements. 

For the current year, the USDA lowered domestic beet sugar production by 53,440 tons, raw value, from August to 5,102,000 tons, “on a small reduction in estimated sucrose recovery from crop year sliced sugar beets and also less sugar from desugared molasses.” Cane sugar production was raised 2,000 tons, to 3,963,000 tons, based on a like-change in output from Texas, resulting in total domestic production of 9,065,000 tons, down about 52,000 tons from August.

“Beet sugar production in August-September 2022 is still estimated at 500,000 tons,” the USDA said. That is the amount of sugar from early harvested 2022 crop sugar beets expected to be available before the end of the current marketing year.

Total imports were forecast at 3,673,000 tons, down 72,615 tons from August, based on tariff-rate quota imports of 1,648,000 tons, down 117,615 tons, and high-tier imports at a record 370,000 tons, up 45,000 tons, “due mainly to high-duty raw sugar imports made by refiners in August.” Imports from Mexico in the current year were unchanged at 1,355,000 tons.

“Imports of 117,615 tons under the 2021-22 raw sugar TRQ are now expected to enter after Sept. 30 in fiscal year 2022-23 as permitted by the USDA extension of the quota year,” the USDA said. “Although USDA extended the quota year time limit by two additional months from Oct. 31 to Dec. 31, there is no expected reduction in the raw sugar TRQ shortfall of 77,162,000 tons.”

Total supply in 2021-22 was forecast at 14,443,000 tons, down 125,000 tons from August but up 371,000 tons from 2020-21. 

Domestic sugar deliveries in 2021-22 were forecast at 12,655,000 tons, down 50,000 tons from August based on a like-reduction in deliveries for food, lowered to 12,550,000 tons, which still was up 389,000 tons, or 3.2%, from 2020-21.

“Deliveries for human consumption are reduced by 50,000 tons, to 12,550,000, on lower-than-expected direct consumption imports in July and projected for August and September,” the USDA said.

US sugar ending stocks on Sept. 30, 2022, were forecast at 1,753,000 tons, down 74,093 tons from August. 

The ending stocks-to-use ratio was forecast at 13.8%, down from 14.3% as the August forecast and unchanged from 2020-21.

For the new marketing year beginning Oct. 1, lower beginning stocks, slightly lower domestic production and lower imports from Mexico were only partially offset by higher TRQ imports. With no changes from August in forecast 2022-23 sugar deliveries, the ending stocks-to-use ratio was adjusted to 13.5% from 14.3% in August.

Domestic beet sugar production in 2022-23 was projected at 5,119,000 tons, down 18,421 tons from August, cane sugar output at 4,021,000 tons, up 8,000 tons, and total production at 9,141,000 tons, down 10,000 tons.

“Cane sugar production in Louisiana is increased by 40,000 tons on the (USDA) increase in forecast sugar cane production,” the USDA said. “Florida cane sugar production is decreased by 31,537 tons based on processors’ forecasts submitted to USDA. Beet sugar production is decreased by 18,421 tons on lower sugar beet production forecast by (USDA). An increase in sugar beet production in the Red River Valley is more than offset by reduced production in the Great Plains.” 

Total imports in 2022-23 were projected at 3,481,000 tons, down 20,000 tons from August as imports from Mexico at 1,618,775 tons, down 137,405 tons, were only partially offset by TRQ imports at 1,562,000 tons, up 117,000 tons. Other program imports at 250,000 tons and high-tier imports at 50,000 tons both were unchanged from August. Total US sugar supply in 2022-23 was projected at 14,375,000 tons, down 105,000 tons from August.

Total deliveries in 2022-23 were projected at 12,630,000 tons, including deliveries for food at 12,525,000 tons and other at 105,000 tons, all unchanged from August, as were exports at 35,000 tons.

Ending stocks in 2022-23 were forecast at 1,710,386 tons, down 104,000 tons from August and down 43,000 tons from 2021-22.

The USDA made no changes from August in its September estimates for 2021-22 or projections for 2022-23 for Mexico sugar supply and use.