U.S.D.A. sets sugar allocations, adjusts import dates

by Ron Sterk
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture set the initial 2010-11 overall domestic sugar market allotment (O.A.Q.) at 9,235,250 tons, raw value, the same as the initial 2009-10 level, and also made adjustments to arrival dates for Tariff Rate Quota (T.R.Q.) imports.

The beet sugar share of the O.A.Q. was 5,019,358 tons (54.4%) and the cane sugar share was 4,215,892 tons (45.6%).

In addition, for the current marketing year (2009-10) the U.S.D.A. reassigned 170,000 tons of beet sugar and 200,000 tones of cane sugar to raw cane sugar imports already expected from non-T.R.Q. sources because of expected shortfalls from domestic processors. The U.S.D.A. already had reassigned 300,000 tons of the domestic cane sugar allotment to raw sugar T.R.Q. imports on July 6.

Further, the U.S.D.A. said it would allow 2009-10 T.R.Q. raw sugar imports to enter the United States until Oct. 30, a month past the end of the current marketing year, and it would allow 2010-11 raw sugar imports to arrive as of Sept. 1, a month before the beginning of the new marketing year.

“These actions are in response to increased tightness in the U.S. raw sugar market,” the U.S.D.A. said.

The U.S.D.A. announced the 2010-11 T.R.Q. level of 1,231,497 tons, raw value, on Aug. 2. The latest date change and reallocation did not change the 2009-10 T.R.Q. of 1,731,497 tons, which had previously been increased twice this year.

The T.R.Q. and O.A.Q. levels do not include the bulk of shipments from Mexico, which can enter the United States duty free under the North American Free Trade Agreement.

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