U.S.D.A. cuts U.S., Mexican sugar forecasts

by Ron Sterk
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture in its Feb. 10 World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates projected U.S. sugar carryover on Oct. 1, 2014, at 1,825,000 short tons, raw value, down 56,000 tons, or 3%, from its January projection and down 332,000 tons, or 15%, from 2,157,000 tons on Oct. 1, 2013, which was lowered 3,000 tons.

The 2013-14 ending stocks-to-use ratio was projected at 14.9%, down from 15.4% as the January projection and down from 17.9% as the 2012-13 ratio.

For 2012-13, domestic production was lowered 2,000 tons to 8,980,000 tons, based on a like decrease in beet sugar production. All import figures were unchanged from January. Total supply also was lowered 2,000 tons to 14,183,000 tons. Total sugar use for 2012-13 was forecast at 12,026,000 tons, up 1,000 tons from January, based on a like increase in deliveries for food at 11,487,000 tons.

Total 2013-14 U.S. sugar production was projected at 8,725,000 tons, down 53,000 tons from January based on a like reduction in Florida cane sugar production, which was forecast at 1,780,000 tons. A 5,000-ton increase in Hawaiian production was offset by a 5,000-ton decrease in Texas output.

Total U.S. imports in 2013-14 were projected at 3,184,000 tons, unchanged from January and down 40,000 tons from 3,224,000 tons in 2012-13. Total sugar supply was projected at 14,066,000 tons, down 56,000 tons from January based on changes in domestic cane sugar production and beginning stocks.

Forecast sugar use for 2013-14 was unchanged from January at 12,241,000 tons, with deliveries for food use at 11,490,000 tons.

Significant changes were made in the U.S.D.A.’s 2013-14 Mexican supply and use projections, while 2012-13 numbers were unchanged.

The U.S.D.A. forecast 2013-14 sugar production in Mexico at 6,350,000 tonnes, actual weight, down 345,000 tonnes, or 5%, from January and down 625,000 tonnes, or 9%, from 2012-13, “based on the pace to date.” Imports were unchanged from January at 226,000 tonnes. Domestic use was projected at 4,690,000 tonnes, down 100,000 tonnes, or 2%, from January and down 36,000 tonnes from 2012-13. Exports for the current year were forecast at 2,399,000 tonnes, down 223,000 tonnes, or 8.5%, from January but up 427,000 tonnes, or 22%, from last year, although shipments to the United States were unchanged from January. Ending stocks were forecast at 947,000 tonnes, down 22,000 tonnes, or 2%, from January and down 513,000 tonnes, or 35%, from 2012-13.
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