Sugar Output in Brazil Center South Drops 22% Sept. 16-30

Sugar output in Brazil’s Center South, the world’s largest producing region, declined 22 percent in the second half of September after rain disrupted harvesting, industry association Unica said.

Mills in the region, where about a fifth of the world’s sugar is produced, made 2.21 million metric tons of the sweetener between Sept. 16 and Sept. 30, down from 2.84 million tons a year earlier, Sao Paulo-based Unica said in an e-mailed report today.

Growers harvested 31.8 million tons of sugarcane in the period, down from 36.9 million tons a year earlier. Ethanol output dropped 12 percent to 1.44 billion liters (379 million gallons).

Mills turned 48.6 percent of the cane into sugar, down from 51.8 percent a year earlier. The rest was processed into ethanol.

For the entire crop year that started April 1, sugar output is forecast to rise to 32.7 million tons, from 31.3 million tons in the past season, Unica said Sept. 20. The region will produce 518.5 million tons of cane, up from 493.2 million tons in the past season, Unica said.