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Sugar production up 11% at 25.1 mn tonne in Oct-Apr

Output up 500,000 tn in Maharashtra

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has risen 11% to 25.1 million tonnes during October-April, 2011-12, driven by higher output in Uttar Pradesh, industry body ISMA said today.

The country had produced about 22.6 million tonne sugar in the same period last marketing year (October-September).

"Most of the increase has been contributed by Uttar Pradesh, which has seen a rise of almost 1.1 million tonne in sugar production at 6.95 million tonne this year so far," (ISMA) said in a statement.

The output has risen by 500,000 tonnes in Maharashtra, a major sugar producing state, at 8.83 million tonnes.

The production in Karnataka stood at 3.71 million tonne, in at 1.57 million tonne and in at 1.11 million tonne during the period under review.

Buoyed by the higher output, the association is confident of meeting its production target of 26 million tonnes for the ongoing sugar marketing season.

"ISMA is absolutely certain that its sugar production estimate of 26 million tonnes projected way back in July 2011 will be achieved," the association said.

The balance 900,000 tonnes would come largely from Tamil Nadu which is expected to still produce about 650,000 tonnes between May and September in the current season, it said.

During last year, Tamil Nadu sugar mills produced 690,000 lakh tons in May-September.

ISMA's sugar production projection is, however, higher than the government's estimate of 25.2 million tonne for this year.

However, the number of sugar mills still crushing sugarcane is lower at 129 as on May 1 2012, in comparison to 174 sugar mills last year on the same date, ISMA said.

In view of 64 sugar mills still crushing sugarcane in Maharashtra, ISMA expects another 200,000 tonnes to be produced by sugar mills there in the next couple of months and Karnataka to produce just about 100,000 tonnes, partly in May and partly in September, 2012.

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