June 10, 2019 / 10:28 AM / 2 months ago

ISO raises 2018/19 global sugar surplus forecast

FILE PHOTO: A corn crop at Cercado Grande farm, where expansion of grains cultivation led the farm to scrap a contract with a sugar mill for cane planting in Itajai, Sao Paulo state, Brazil April 1, 2018. REUTERS/Marcelo Rodrigues Teixeira/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - The International Sugar Organization (ISO) on Monday forecast a global sugar surplus of 1.83 million tonnes in the 2018/19 season, up from a previous estimate of 641,000 tonnes.

The increase reflects “spectacular” production in India and Thailand as well as a diminished outlook for sugar consumption, the inter-governmental body said in a quarterly report.

“At this late stage of the crop cycle, the world sugar economy has managed to generate some late-season surprises, worsening the fundamental picture,” the ISO said.

Global sugar production in 2018/19 (October/September) was seen at 178.75 million tonnes, marginally above a previous projection of 178.68 million, with a decrease in output in Brazil helping to limit the extent of the rise.

Expected sugar consumption in 2018/19 was revised down to 176.91 million tonnes, from the previous forecast of 178.04 million tonnes.

A shift to a global deficit of about 3 million tonnes was provisionally seen for 2019/20.

“It has to be stressed that any price recovery on the back of a statistical deficit of this magnitude might be muted by the huge stocks accumulated since the beginning of the surplus phase in 2017/18,” the ISO said.

Reporting by Nigel Hunt; Editing by David Goodman

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