According to the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) considering the pipeline, it is expected that physical exports by the end of this month maybe around 55–56 lakh tonnes. Accordingly, it is estimated that in the current season, the Indian sugar industry should be able to export 75 lakh tonnes, which will be a record achievement.

Considering estimated domestic consumption of 272 lakh tonnes and production of 333 lakh tonnes, the export of 75 lakh tonnes will help reduce the closing stock of sugar at 68 lakh tonnes on September 30, 2022. This will be 77 lakh tonnes lower than 145 lakh tonnes the Indian sugar industry had on September, 30, 2019.

Crushing operations 

About 81 mills across the country have stopped crushing and 435 sugar mills still continue operations. Mills have produced 283.26 lakh tonnes of sugar against 259.37 lakh tonnes produced last year by March 15, 2021 said Indian Sugar Mills Association in a statement on Thursday. 

Mills in Maharashtra reported sugar production of 108.95 lakh tonnes, compared with 94.05 lakh tonnes produced last year same period. In the current 2021-22 Sugar season, 13 mills have closed their crushing operations in the State, most of them in the Kolhapur region, and the remaining 184 sugar mills are operating. 

In Uttar Pradesh, 120 sugar mills that were in operation have produced 78.33 lakh tonnes of sugar. Out of 120 sugar mills, 16 sugar mills have stopped crushing operations, most of them located in Eastern UP. In case of Karnataka 72 sugar mills have produced 54.65 lakh tonnes of sugar. Out of the 72 sugar mills, 24 mills have closed their operations in the State and 48 mills are still operating.

In Gujarat 15 mills are currently in operation and have produced 9.15 lakh tonnes of sugar. Last year, the similar number of sugar mills operated. 

In Tamil Nadu, 26 sugar mills commenced their crushing operations for 2021-22 and have produced 5.75 lakh tonnes of sugar, as compared to 4.16 lakh tonnes produced by a same number of sugar mills in 2020-21. 

Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, and Odisha have collectively produced 26.43 lakh tonnes of sugar till date. 

Ethanol production 

On the ethanol front, against the total Letter of Intent (LOI) quantity of 416.33 crore litres, 113.17 crore litres of ethanol have been supplied as of March 13, 2022. 

Out of the total supply so far, about 86 per cent comprises of ethanol made from sugarcane juice / B heavy molasses. The contracted quantity as on date is 391.85 crore litres as against LOIs of about 416 crore liters issued by OMCs. “The country on an average has achieved a blending percentage of 9.45 per cent till mid-March since December 2021” ISMA stated.