Sugar consumption seen rising next year

Philippine sugar consumption would increase by 50,000 metric tons (MT) to 2.25 million metric tons (MMT) next year, as prices remain soft due to ample supply, according to the latest Global Agricultural Information Network report.

The report, prepared by the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) in Manila, said the increasing demand of a growing population for food and beverages would also boost sugar consumption in marketing year (MY) 2017/2018.

“Consumption of cane sugar should approach 2.2 MMT in MY 2016/2017, from 2.14 MMT in the previous marketing year, as restrictions on the importation of high-fructose corn syrup are implemented and industrial consumers react to the drop in domestic prices,” the report read.

The anticipated surge in carryover stocks would also increase Philippine raw-sugar exports in MY 2017/2018, according to FAS. It revised upwards the projected shipments of raw sugar to 250,000 MT, from the USDA’s initial forecast of 100,000 MT.

The Philippines received an additional tariff rate quota (TRQ) allocation of 63,830 MT raw value (MTRV) in fiscal year (FY) 2017, bringing its total allocation to 205,990 MTRV.

“FY 2018 TRQ to the United States is set at 142,160 MTRV [136,201 MT commercial weight]. About 10 percent of the estimated 2.38 MMT of sugar produced has been initially earmarked for the world market,” the report read.

FAS said total raw sugar production in MY 2017/2018, which would begin in December, would increase to 2.38 MMT on projected expansion in sugarcane areas.

“The Sugar Regulatory Administration [SRA] is forecasting
raw-sugar production at 2.38 MMT in crop year [CY] 2017/2018, although industry projects this figure to be higher based on anecdotal evidence that sugarcane areas planted will reach 424,000 hectares,” the report read.

Total raw-sugar production in MY 2016/2017, which would end in November, was also revised upward by FAS to 2.5 MMT, from 2.25 MMT, on better-than-expected cane yields resulted from favorable weather conditions during the first half of 2017.

On August 31 the SRA issued Sugar Order 1, which projected sugar production for CY 2017/2018 at 2.38 MMT and withdrawals at 2.17 MMT. About 80 percent of sugar production has been classified as “B”, or for the domestic market, while 10 percent has been classified as “A” for the US market and another 10 percent as “D” for the world market.