December 8, 2023

SUGAR: Mexico production for 2023/24 is projected at 5.283 million metric tons (MT), a decrease of 47,000 from last month but up 58,752 over last year. Production costs are lower this year and production in some areas has benefitted from October seasonal rains. With lower fertilizer prices this year, growers have increased its use back to normal levels compared with last season. Nonetheless, widespread moderate to extreme drought conditions limit the impact of increased fertilizer on production. October rainfall likely benefitted the crop in Veracruz, Jalisco, and southern states but the effect will not likely manifest until later in the season. The effect of extreme drought conditions in San Luis Potosí, Tamaulipas, and Michoacan are unlikely to be reversed.
CONADESUCA released its first estimate of 2023/24 production immediately after the release of last month’s WASDE. It pegs production at 5.188 million MT. Its forecast of production of low polarity sugar for export to the United States is 11.8 percent of the total, or 612,131 MT. Applying that percentage to the USDA projection implies low polarity sugar production at 632,751 MT. Assuming that all of this sugar is exported to the U.S. market and like last year constitutes about 75 percent of the total exported, exports to the United States are then projected at 831,083 MT. Exports to other countries are unchanged at 25,000 MT and total exports at 856,083 MT are down 194,669 from last month. Deliveries and ending stocks are unchanged and imports are residually projected at 285,869 MT, down 147,669 from last month.
U.S. sugar supply for 2023/24 is increased by 119,852 short tons, raw value (STRV) mostly on an increase in imports. USTR reallocated the raw sugar TRQ at the end of November and USDA expects an import increase due to that action of 162,855 STRV leaving TRQ shortfall at 91,776 (down from 254,632 last month). Imports from Mexico are down by 227,461 STRV to 971,079. High-tier tariff imports are increased by 190,000 STRV to 465,000 constituted by 290,000 of raw sugar and 175,000 refined. Louisiana cane sugar production for 2023/24 is increased 12,250 STRV to 1.799 million on a higher sugarcane yield forecast by NASS. Texas production is increased slightly as well on processor reporting. Beet sugar production is unchanged. Deliveries are unchanged but exports are increased 65,000 STRV to 100,000 on the increase in the monthly pace seen over the July-October period. Ending stocks are projected at 1.624 million STRV, implying a stocks-to-use ratio of 12.76 percent.

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