Sugarcane crop in Brazil may be lower than expected, says Wilmar

Published Jul 21, 2021

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The water crisis has worsened the prospects for the sugarcane crop in Brazil, according to trading company Wilmar International. With the impact of the drought, sugarcane production in the Center-South region is expected to fall by almost 100 million tons in the 2021/22 harvest compared to the previous year, to 510 million tons in the 2021-22 season, estimates Wilmar, headquartered in Singapore. In April, the forecast was 530 million tons.

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The new volume would be the smallest in a decade, and there is a chance of falling further. “We've never seen such crop conditions, with a record rainfall deficit month after month,” said Karim Salamon, head of sugar market analysis at Wilmar, via email. “There is no reference to such a drought in the Center-South of Brazil for such a long period. This never happened." Droughts and frosts in the world's largest sugar exporter contributed to a global sugar deficit, helping to push raw sugar futures to the highest level in four years earlier this month. The strengthening of the ethanol market has also led some mills in Brazil to divert more cane to produce biofuel instead of sugar. Raw sugar accumulates a gain of about 12% this year, being quoted at 17.39 cents per pound in New York. Prices slowed on Monday amid signs that Brazil's main producing regions managed to escape major damage caused by low temperatures. The sharp drop in production in Brazil should lead some mills to close ...
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