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USDA Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook


15 April 2014

USDA Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook - 15 April 2014USDA Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook - 15 April 2014


USDA Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook

NAFTA Sugar April 2014

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) changed its projection of 2013/14 cane sugar production in two States based on revised forecasts made by sugarcane millers: for Florida–a decrease of 25,000 short tons, raw value (STRV) to 1.740 million STRV; and for Texas –a decrease of 5,000 STRV to 130,000 STRV. Based on processors’ forecasts, the USDA reduced beet sugar production by 41,000 STRV to 4.984 million STRV. Beginning stocks were revised down slightly based on industry-supplied data. The USDA made no other changes. Ending stocks are projected at 1.610 million STRV–73,000 STRV below last month’s projection. The stocks-to-use ratio is projected at 13.0 percent, reduced from last month’s 13.6 percent.

The USDA made no changes to Mexico 2013/14 sugar supply and use but did reduce its forecast of high fructose corn syrup consumption by 131,000 metric tons (mt) to 1.360 million mt, dry weight.

Sugar and Sweeteners in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Area

On April 9, 2014, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) published in the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) its latest sugar supply and use projections for the United States and Mexico for fiscal year 2012/13 and projections for 2013/14. Table 1 shows the latest estimates and projections for the United States, and table 2 reports comparable data for Mexico.

U.S. Sugar

The Farm Service Agency (FSA) made one small revision to Sweetener Market Data (SMD) for 2012/13 based on corrected data. Ending stocks were decreased by 1,220 short tons, raw value (STRV) to 2.158 million STRV. Beginning stocks for 2013/14 are the same as ending stocks for 2012/13.

The USDA changed its projection of 2013/14 cane sugar production in two States based on revised forecasts made by sugarcane millers: in Florida, a decrease of 25,000 STRV to 1.740 million STRV; and in Texas, a decrease of 5,000 STRV to 130,000 STRV. As reported 2 months ago, the Florida crop had been hurt by rain and freezing temperatures in January. This month’s decrease is the third reduction made this year as processors have a clearer view of the final production total. Texas continues to struggle with diminished prospects this year.

The USDA changed its projection of 2013/14 beet sugar production based on revised beet sugar processors’ forecasts. The new total is 4.984 million STRV, a reduction of 41,000 STRV from last month and only 1.8 percent lower than last year’s fiscal year total. In spite of a reduction in prospective plantings of 3.8 percent, beet processors expect August-September production to be over 500,000 STRV, about the same huge total realized 2 years ago. According to sources, processors expect excellent yields to compensate for reduced plantings, especially in the Red River Valley.

The USDA made no changes to imports. The Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) estimates that sugar imports from Mexico have totaled 1.044 million metric tons, raw value (MTRV), or 1.151 million STRV, through the end of March. This amounts to about 66 percent of projected total-year imports from Mexico. For the 6 months remaining in the fiscal year, the average level of imports would have to equal 99,036 STRV per month to reach but not exceed the full-year forecast. This monthly average would be about 48 percent lower than the average for the first 6 months.

Sugar imports entering under the 2013/14 raw sugar tariff-rate quota (TRQ) have summed to 419,490 MTRV (or 462,408 STRV) through the end of March, or only about 35 percent of the 2013/14 forecast. The Sugar and Sweetener Outlook estimates that, similar to last year, most sugar from Mexico—about 70 percent through the end of March— has been imported by cane sugar refiners. This is in stark contrast to the 42 percent estimated for the first 5 years following the implementation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) sweetener provisions. With the expected decrease in imports from Mexico for the rest of the year, the pace of raw sugar TRQ imports should pick up. There was no change to the raw sugar TRQ shortfall forecast, which is still at 250,000 STRV.

The USDA made no changes to 2013/14 sugar exports (325,000 STRV) or sugar deliveries made under the sugar-containing products component of the re-export imports program (100,000 STRV).

Sugar deliveries for human consumption continue their strong pace in 2013/14. Deliveries for the first 5 months total 4.694 million STRV, about 1.3 percent greater than the total for the corresponding period last year.

Published by USDA Economic Research Service

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