New Delhi, Nov 19 Sugar production in the current 2012-13 season till November 15 stood at 9.84 lakh tonnes.

This is about two lakh tonnes more than the corresponding last year’s output of 7.76 lakh tonnes, the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said in a statement.

This 27 per cent rise in output is mainly on account of higher production by mills in Karnataka. Majority of the sugar mills in Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh are yet to begin crushing, which has been delayed over cane pricing issues.

Higher output

About 178 mills across the country have begun crushing as on November 15 against 215 mills during the same time last year. In UP, only three mills have begun crushing against 43 last year. In Maharashtra, 93 mills have started their operations against 95 last year.

However, in Karnataka 49 mills have begun production against 48 in the corresponding period last year. Karnataka mills have so far produced 4.2 lakh tonnes against 2.37 lakh tonnes in the corresponding last year.

ISMA expects 2012-13 sugar output at 24 million tonnes, down 8 per cent over last year’s 26 mt. The decline is mainly on account of deficient rains affecting cane acreage in Maharashtra and Karnataka.