Sugar production in Ukraine halved in the past five years, the Association Ukrainian Agribusiness Club (UCAB) reported.
“In 2020, some 982,000 tons of sugar was produced in Ukraine, down by 34% YoY and half the volume of production five years ago. The causes behind this reduction were a decrease in the production of sugar beets in Ukraine and low prices of sugar in the Ukrainian and foreign markets in previous years,” it said.
Last year, 8.3 million tons of sugar beets were harvested in Ukraine, down by 19%, over a reduction in acreage. In addition, unfavorable weather conditions made farmers start the harvesting campaign later than usual.
“Sugar produced in Ukraine is used to meet domestic demand and shipped for export. Both of these sales channels shrank in recent years. Over the past five years, the level of sugar consumption per person decreased by 19%, to 28.8 kilograms per year in 2019. In 2020, some 151,000 tons of sugar was exported, down by 36%,” it said.
At the same time, in recent years, Ukraine imported the minimum amount of sugar, which was 1,000-2,000 tons per year. According to the UCAB, to avoid a deficit in the domestic market and stabilize prices, the Economy Ministry is considering setting a quota for imports of raw cane sugar.
Global prices of sugar have been gradually falling since 2016. In early 2020 alone, sugar prices plummeted by 48%.
“However, starting from February 2020, sugar prices began to rise. The rise in prices on the world market gives reason to hope for a recovery in sugar production both for domestic needs and for an increase in export shipments in accordance with the needs of the global market,” the UCAB said. (UNIAN/Business World Magazine)