The government sets the sugar sales quota at 21 lakh ton for October

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Sweets can sell 21 lakh tonnes of sweetener on the open market during the October festival month, the government order said on Monday.

The Food Ministry 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 factories in total.

An additional sugar quota was released for sale in the domestic market to factories that completed more than half of the export quota in the 2018-19 season which ended this month.

The domestic sales quota, however, was not reduced for factories that were unable to meet their export quota.

Experts said the amount of sugar allocated for domestic sales is sufficient to meet demand in October.

The government has decided to create 4 million tonnes of sugar buffer stock for the 2019-20 season (October-September).

Sugar factories are expected to start grinding operations after Diwali from November 1.

India’s sugar production is forecast to be 32.95 million tonnes in the current marketing year 2018-19 (October-September) compared to annual domestic demand of 26 million tonnes.

According to industry body ISMA, opening sugar stocks are expected to hit a record high of around 14.5 million tonnes on October 1, compared to the normative requirement of around 5 million tonnes.

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