U.S. 2014 sugar carryover up 19% from May

by Ron Sterk
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture in its June 12 World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates projected U.S. sugar carryover on Oct. 1, 2014, at 2,680,000 short tons, raw value, up 435,000 tons, or 19%, from its May projection and up 449,000 tons, or 20%, from 2,231,000 tons forecast for Oct. 1, 2013, which was raised 63,000 tons, or 3%, from the May forecast.

The 2013-14 ending stocks-to-use ratio was projected at 22.4%, up from 18.8% as the May projection and compared with 19% as the 2012-13 ratio, which was up from 18.5% in May. Both years’ ratios are well above the U.S.D.A.’s targeted range around 15%.

Most of the increase for both 2012-13 and 2013-14 resulted from sharply higher forecast imports of sugar from Mexico as U.S. domestic production and use forecasts were unchanged from May for both years.

Total 2013-14 U.S. sugar production was projected at 8,584,000 tons, unchanged from May but down 431,000 tons, or 5%, from 9,015,000 tons in 2012-13. The U.S.D.A. projected beet sugar production at 4,840,000 tons, down 260,000 tons, or 5%, from 5,100,000 tons forecast for 2012-13, and U.S. cane sugar production at 3,744,000 tons, down 171,000 tons, or 4%, from 3,915,000 tons in the current year.

U.S. imports in 2013-14 were projected at 3,810,000 tons, up 372,000 tons, or 11%, from 3,438,000 tons as the May projection. All of the increase was from Mexico, projected at 2,135,000 tons, up 21% from May. Tariff rate quota imports were projected at 1,265,000 tons, unchanged from May and at the required World Trade Organization minimum.

Imports in 2012-13 were forecast at 2,966,000 tons, up 63,000 tons, or 2%, from the May forecast. Tariff rate quota imports were forecast at 1,040,000 tons, down 54,000 tons, or 5%, from May, while imports from Mexico were forecast at 1,791,000 tons, up 117,000 tons, or 7%.

Total 2013-14 U.S. sugar supply was projected at 14,625,000 tons, up 435,000 tons, or 3%, from May as the result of higher beginning stocks and imports from Mexico.

Total domestic sugar deliveries were projected at 11,745,000 tons in 2013-14, unchanged from May and up 210,000 tons, or 2%, from 11,535,000 tons in 2012-13. Sugar deliveries for food and miscellaneous were projected at 11,560,000 tons, unchanged from May and up 160,000 tons, or 1%, from 11,400,000 tons in the current year. U.S. sugar exports in 2013-14 were projected at 200,000 tons, unchanged from May and from the current year. Total sugar use was projected at 11,945,000 tons, up 210,000 tons from 11,735,000 tons in 2012-13.

As expected, the U.S.D.A. significantly boosted estimated 2012-13 Mexican sugar production, “to reflect the strong pace of harvest to date.” Current-year sugar production was forecast at 6,840,000 tonnes, actual weight, up 625,000 tonnes, or 10%, from the May forecast. Imports for 2012-13 were unchanged at 137,000 tonnes, as was domestic use at 4,540,000 tonnes. Exports were forecast at 1,718,000 tonnes, up 100,000 tonnes, or 6%, from May. Ending stocks were forecast at 1,685,000 tonnes, up 525,000 tonnes, or 45%, from the May forecast.

Sugar production in Mexico in 2013-14 was projected at 5,887,000 tonnes, actual weight, unchanged from the May projection and down 953,000 tonnes, or 14%, from 2012-13. Also unchanged from May were projected imports of 137,000 tonnes and domestic use of 4,600,000 tonnes. Exports were projected at 1,937,000 tonnes, up 418,000 tonnes, or 28%, from May and up 13% from 2012-13. Projected 2013-14 ending stocks were 1,172,000 tonnes, up 10% from May but down 513,000 tonnes, or 30%, from this year.

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