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Australia Sugar Production Revised Down

12 October 2012
USDA Foreign Agricultural Service

AUSTRALIA - USDA Foreign Agricultural Services (FAS) estimate for Australian 2012/13 sugar production has been revised downwards (four per cent) to 4.3 million metric tons (MMT.) While rains earlier in the season supported cane growth, they also negatively affected sugar content and delayed harvest and crushing. Despite the decline in the estimated production level, Post’s estimate for sugar exports was increased (three per cent) to 3.1 MMT

Forecast cane area for 2012/13 remains unchanged at 380,000 hectares. While world sugar prices in 2012/13 are down relative to last year, they remain above the historical 10-year average. Consequently, area planted to cane is expected to remain strong in the near-term.

The 2011/12 area estimate remains unchanged at 366,000 hectares. The 2011/12 harvest was cut short by heavy rainfall during the second half of the harvest. Industry sources report that area left un-harvested at the conclusion of the 2011/12 season has been harvested in 2012/13.

Sugar Cane Production

Post’s estimate of sugar cane production for 2012/13 was increased (1.6 per cent) to 31.5 MMT, as early season rains encouraged cane growth. Additionally, un-harvested cane from 2011/12 has been harvested in the current 2012/13 crop.

Estimated cane production for 2011/12 is unchanged at 28.0 MMT, in line with recently published industry data. Difficult harvesting conditions left significant quantities of the 2011/12 cane crop un-harvested and this reduced the overall level of production.

Further Reading

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