Government sets higher sugar sales quota at 21 lakh tonnes for October

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Additional sugar quota was released for sale on the domestic market to factories that fulfilled more than half of the export quota during the 2018-19 season which ended this month.

Sweets can sell 21 lakh tonnes of sweetener on the open market during the month of October, the government order announced on Monday. The Ministry of Food increased the allocation for October by 19.5 lakh tonnes in September taking into account the Dussehra and Diwali festivals. In a notification, the ministry allocated a quota of sugar for sale to each of the country’s 535 mills. Additional sugar quota was released for sale on the domestic market to factories that fulfilled more than half of the export quota during the 2018-19 season which ended this month. However, the domestic sales quota was not reduced for factories that were unable to meet their export quota.

Experts said the amount of sugar allocated for domestic sale is sufficient to meet demand in October. The government has decided to create a sugar buffer stock of 4 million tonnes for the 2019-20 season (October-September). The sweets are expected to start crushing operations after Diwali from November 1.

India’s sugar production is forecast at 32.95 million tonnes for the current 2018-2019 marketing year (October-September), against annual domestic demand of 26 million tonnes. According to industry body ISMA, sugar opening stocks are expected to reach a record high of around 14.5 million tonnes on October 1, against a normative requirement of around 5 million tonnes.

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