Thai sugar output to fall 3.1 pct in 2016/17, exports lower -official


Sugar output for 2016/2017 in Thailand, second-biggest exporter of the sweetener, is expected to fall 3.1 percent due to a widespread drought last year that forced some cane farmers to switch crops, a government agency said on Tuesday.


“For 2016/2017 we should get between 9.3 million to 9.4 million tonnes of sugar, lower than 2015/2016 because of drought and the bad price of sugar,” Boontin Korsiri, an official at the Office of the Cane and Sugar Board, told Reuters.


Thailand’s sugar output in 2015/2016 was 9.7 million tonnes, according to the board. The expectation of lower production in Thailand comes amid other forecasts of a widening global deficit, with an output fall in top producer India also contributing to the growing supply shortfall.


Boontin said Thailand can expect to export around 6.8 million tonnes of sugar this year, down about 7.1 million tonnes in 2015/2016.


Domestically, Thailand consumes about 2.6 million tonnes of sugar per year, according to the sugar board.


Thailand experienced its worst drought in more than two decades last year because of the El Nino weather pattern, which damaged crops in Southeast Asia and led to food shortages.


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