Cepea, January 7, 2020 – The 2019/20 season is the second consecutive crop that mills in São Paulo State allocated more sugarcane to produce ethanol instead of sugar. However, different from 2018, when crystal sugar values moved down, in 2019, prices registered a slight increase.
From April to December/19, the CEPEA/ESALQ Index for crystal sugar (SP) averaged 65.35 BRL per 50-kilo bag, 3.1% up compared to that in the season before (63.36 BRL/bag between April and December/18), in real terms – IGP-DI November/19.
Unica (Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association) indicates that, from April to November/19, mills in São Paulo crushed 337.332 million tons of sugarcane, 4.63% more compared to that in the same period of the crop before. From this amount, 58.93% were allocated to ethanol production and 41.07%, to sugar production. The total volume of sugar produced was 18.33 million tons, 2.86% higher in relation to the same period of the previous season.
Sugarcane crushing in the 2019/20 season started in April/19 in SP, one week delayed compared to 2018/19. In that period, rains affected harvesting activities. In the following months, rains decreased, favoring production. As a result, up to late November, 88% of the mills in SP had already finished crushing activities, 11 days earlier than last season.
As usual, the first harvested batches of sugarcane were used to produce ethanol, which resulted in low sugar supply in the spot market until May. Availability started to increase only from June onwards, and the period of higher liquidity was between July and September. In general, demand was higher in 2019 compared to that in the year before. Cepea data indicate that total sugar sales (contracts, spot and retail market) in the 2019/20 crop in SP (up to November/19) were 8.4% higher compared to that in the same period of 2018.
Monthly averages of the CEPEA/ESALQ Index from April to August/19 were higher than those registered in the same period of 2018. From September to December/19, on the other hand, averages were lower.
According to data from Secex, from January to November/19, Brazil shipped 16.957 million tons of sugar, which resulted in a revenue of 4.923 billion USD. In the same period last year, exports totaled 19.819 million tons, with a revenue of 6.106 billion USD.