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France's sugar beet output is expected to fall more than 7% this year after a severe drought this summer hit yields, and next season could see another drop in planted area if farmers switch to more profitable grain crops, beet growers said on Wednesday. In its first estimate for this season, growers group CGB put the crop at 32 million tonnes, in line with the French farm ministry's forecast of 31.94 million tonnes issued in early November, but well below last year's 34.5 million tonnes. This year's sugar beet crop was expected to generate 3.6 million tonnes of sugar in 2022/23, down from 3.9 million tonnes last season, CGB said.
In order to define its climate targets, AGRANA has now for the first time calculated greenhouse gas emissions along the entire value-added chains (Scope 1 + 2 + 3) of each of its three business segments (Fruit, Starch and Sugar) given its role as an energy-intensive processor of agricultural raw materials. The major challenge which AGRANA has set itself as one of the first in the industry is estimating emissions from farming the agricultural products its processes due to the lack of supplier data. Its 2019|20 financial year was defined as the baseline for calculations. In total, AGRANA’s business activities accounted for around 5.1 million tonnes of CO2e over this period. The majority of this (around 80 %) originates from the upstream value-added chain (Scope 3) or, more precisely, from the growing of agricultural raw materials (again around 80 %). In order to reduce these emissions, AGRANA will be focussing on land use for agricultural production and on the impacts of agricultural growing methods. The aim is to collaborate with AGRANA’s suppliers and agricultural partners to develop and implement specific climate-related reduction targets by 2030. In addition, and in its role as a processor of agricultural raw materials, AGRANA is already working intensively on implementing its plan to completely switch to renewable sources of energy for production purposes. Besides regular energy efficiency steps, key actions here will be a comprehensive green electricity package and, from 2025, the thermal utilisation of low-protein raw material waste instead of natural gas. The volume of investments in efforts to reduce Scope 1 + 2 emissions in the period to 2040 will be around 400 million Euro.
Since the beginning of the campaign, Pfeifer & Langen's Jülich factory has been running almost continuously, and more than 1,000 tons of beet per day have been processed in excess of the original plan. The plant thus currently achieves a historically high performance. Beet yields are above the initial estimate. The good yield is clouded by slightly below-average sugar contents, but an upward trend can be seen.
Unfavourable weather conditions, notably low rainfall for much of the 2022 sugar beet growing season had led to fears of low yields in Poland. But the weather conditions which have prevailed since September have significantly improved the condition of the beet crop, and in some locations, record yields have been observed. In Otmuchów, in the Opole voivodeship, a new record was set for the highest yield of sugar beet harvested of 93.95 t/ha, with a polarization of 18.70%, equivalent to 112.11 t / ha at 16% polarization.
Sudzucker warned it would increase sugar prices again next year amid thinning margins. It noted that sugar demand in the bloc had returned to pre-pandemic levels, although Reuters reports that confectioners are looking at lowering production due to high costs. Similarly, in Spain, where the Consumer Price Index showed that sugar prices in October were 43% higher on year, the Association of Artisan Pastry Entrepreneurs (CEEAP) said it had to increase prices. Spain’s Union of Small Farmers and Ranchers (UPA) said that higher prices hadn’t helped the beet’s profitability, however. Sudzucker added that it didn’t expect a big increase in beet area next year due to limitations from crop rotations.
The beet campaign is currently in full swing in all beet growing regions in Germany. It is already clear that the extreme heat and the long drought have taken their toll on the beets. The rain came too late for the hoped-for yield growth. While sugar content decreased to 17.7%, beet delivery remained almost the same compared to the second estimate. The expected sugar production must therefore be revised downwards to just under 3.9 million tonnes. Currently, the world market price also supports the EU internal market. The higher revenues are necessary to compensate for additional costs for e.g. fertilizer or energy and to maintain the competitiveness of the sugar industry. In the long run, however, this can only succeed if the energy supply of the factories becomes climate-neutral. To achieve this, beet pulp would have to be included in the directive as a renewable energy source. "We appeal to politicians at federal and EU level to support this amendment to the RED III," comments Günter Tissen, Managing Director of the German Sugar Economic Association.
EU farmers have slammed the European Commission’s plans to bolster the sector against the fertiliser crisis, accusing the EU executive of offering farmers ‘almost nothing’ ahead of the imminent spring season. Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine has upended global agrifood chains. Besides causing major disruption in grain markets, the war has also sparked a global mineral fertiliser crisis, which has hit the EU hard. Soaring energy costs, combined with sanctions curtailing the import of key fertiliser inputs from Belarus, have seen the price of fertilisers skyrocket as much as 149% in September 2022.
UK sugar production was 1.03 million tonnes in the year 2021/22, up on the 0.9 million tonnes produced in the last campaign with good growing conditions supporting higher yields which more than offset a reduced growing area. The factories performed well despite a delay at the start of the campaign which affected throughput. Energy costs were at high levels although forward cover of gas mitigated much of the impact this financial year. We benefitted from strong pricing for both the electricity we produce and export to the grid and from the bioethanol produced from sugar. The Vivergo bioethanol plant re-started during the year with a steady increase in production rates. Trading in Spain was much improved, with higher sugar production leading to a strong increase in sales volumes. Higher production volumes were achieved from an increase in refined raw sugar volumes. However, beet sugar production from the southern region was significantly lower, impacted by drought and very high temperatures which reduced crop yields. The significant improvement in sales volumes reflected both higher demand in Iberia and reduced imports from other EU countries.
Sugar beet processing at 35%, sugar content stable. The sugar beet harvest is going very smoothly this year with good figures. More than 35% of the planned beet volume has already been processed and the sugar content has been fairly stable in recent weeks. For the current season, the perspective for the beet price has improved.
Fit For 55, the EU’s package of energy- and climate-related legislative proposals, sets an EU-wide target of -55% GHG reductions by 2030. The roll-out of renewables will be crucial in meeting these targets, including in the EU sugar sector. But to decarbonise we need a revised Renewable Energy Directive that helps, rather than hinders, the use of residual beet pulp as an energy solution.
Südzucker AG is once again raising the group's forecast after continued positive development. Südzucker now expects group revenues of EUR 9.7 to 10.1 (previous forecast: 9.4 to 9.8; 2021/22: 7.6) billion for the 2022/23 financial year (1 March 2022 to 28 February 2023). Group EBITDA is now seen in a range between EUR 890 and 990 (previous forecast 810 to 910; 2021/22: 692) million and group operating result is now seen in a range between EUR 530 and 630 (previous forecast 450 to 550; 2021/22: 332) million. The improvement is driven by the sugar segment.
The cooperative group Tereos has announced "sharp increase in the price of beet", up to €40.04/t for standard quality 16% for all sugar beet delivered in 2022. A first deposit of €20.02/t will be paid on 30 November, reports Le Betteravier Français. Gérard Clay, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Tereos wrote in a letter dated 18 October that, "In view of the sales achieved and the market prospects, we are already recording a significant increase in our average selling price equivalent sugar, compared to 2021." The new price represents an increase of just over €10/t compared to the average total remuneration received by a Tereos cooperator for sugar beet in 2021-2002.
A group of 400 farmers from Transylvania, organized in an association led by the Sibiu farmer Teodor Aflat, succeeded in taking over the Ludus sugar factory that the French Tereos group was planning to close down. Beet growers say they have persuaded the French group to sell them a majority stake, Profit.ro reported. But the terms of the contract are confidential. Canned food producer Scandia, located not far from Ludus in Sibiu, was reportedly among those exploring the options to take over the sugar factory - but they reported that the French owners asked for a "prohibitive price" and a binding offer before the evaluation of the factory. Romania imports some 75% of the 500,000 tonnes of sugar it consumes. Only two factories are still in operation, including Ludus, with the other being Agrana. At the beginning of the year, Tereos - France's largest sugar producer and the world's second-largest producer, confirmed that it was considering giving up its business in Romania due to the losses incurred in recent years. The factory has been operating since 1960.
The free trade agreement (FTA) negotiations with India are no longer working towards a Diwali deadline, UK Trade Secretary Kemi Badenoch has confirmed. During a visit to a Scotch whisky distillery on Thursday, the Cabinet minister in charge of the FTA negotiations at the Department for International Trade (DIT) said the deal being lined up with India would bring great wins for the industry as the steep tariffs of up to 150 per cent are set to be slashed. However, while the negotiations are progressing well, signing a draft agreement by October 24 is no longer the goal. "We are close. We're still working on a deal. One of the things that has changed is that we are no longer working to the Diwali deadline, Badenoch told the BBC.
Early sugar beet yields are better than first feared, with a wide range of yields being reported across eastern England, after a spring and summer drought restricted root growth. Beet yields are clearly down on last year’s average of just over 80t/ha, but not the disaster some growers dreaded after rain around the August bank holiday weekend rescued some hard-pressed drought-stressed crops.
Südzucker AG’s group revenues rose about 29 percent to EUR 4,624 (previous year: 3,596) million in the first half of fiscal 2022/23. All segments contributed to this increase. Sugar segment's revenues were up significantly to EUR 1,443 (previous year: 1,231) million in the first half of the year. Sugar sales revenues improved significantly with higher volumes overall. Beet yields are expected to be below average as a result of the persistent, widespread drought in almost all of Europe. However, the above-average sugar content due to the many hours of sunshine will not fully compensate for this; only Belgium is expected to have an above-average harvest.
AGRANA, the international fruit, starch and sugar group, generated revenue of € 1,792.3 million in the first half of the 2022|23 financial year, a significant increase of 25.8% year-on-year (H1 prior year: € 1,424.4 million). The Sugar segment’s revenue in the first half of 2022|23 was up 30.3% from one year earlier. The reasons were increased sales volumes and significantly higher selling prices. The price gains were especially significant in the market segment of resellers, and prices also showed a very positive trend in the industrial sector.
Record-high sugar prices in the European Union, nearly three times levels seen a year ago following extreme weather and a surge in energy costs, are forcing confectioners to consider production cuts. Sugar dealers and industry experts said spot prices for refined white sugar on the continent are trading at around 1,050 euros ($1,016.61) a tonne - their highest level yet. "EU sugar prices are at their highest level ever. Beet sugar factories in Europe run on natural gas and look at where gas prices are," said Julian Price, consultant at julianprice.com and former President of ASSUC, the European Sugar Traders' association.
The classification of molasses as a renewable, carbon-free feedstock for biofuel will severely hamper the production of yeast, a key element in preparing bread, beer, and wine, European yeast producers have warned. The EU yeast producers trade body Cofalec is calling on lawmakers to ensure that a biofuel cap is placed on the use of molasses, a syrupy byproduct made from extracting sugars from sugar beet.
Following the Commission proposals on a Green Deal and Farm to Fork strategies, we’ve been hearing too often, including from Vice-President Timmermans, that any negative impacts on farmer’s incomes can be compensated by the Common Agricultural Policy. But the CAP budget is quickly shrinking. The culprit is high inflation, which reduces the real value of support. Direct support received by farmers is directly and heavily impacted. Even investment aids are impacted as the total amounts available shrink with inflation. Pillar I will lose a staggering 68.60 billion euros, and Pillar II 15.97 billion euros. Under those circumstances, finding a new political path to deliver the green deal, based on a green growth strategy for the agricultural sector is urgent, switching from a regulatory based strategy aiming at cutting productivity tools to a proper investment strategy fostering agronomic systemic approaches and innovation, embarking farmers on a positive path for both the economy and climate.
Further to the harvest of the first beets this season, sugar beet production in France is estimated at 32.9 million tonnes. This would represent a decrease by 4.2% compared with 2021, despite the stability of the surfaces sown to beet, and a decrease of 10.9% compared with the 2017-2021 average. The average yield is revised downwards to 81.9 t/ha in 2022, compared to 85.5 t/ha in 2021 and the five year average of 82.4 t/ha.
The big breakfast myth – and why we get the first meal of the day all wrong. Experts in diet, nutrition and the history of food suggest that many of our most cherished beliefs about breakfast are quite wrong, the result of a still-tumbling avalanche of marketing by mass manufacturers keen to have us consume their processed and often salt- and sugar-laden products. Much of what we think we know about the first meal of the day is mistaken, and there are questions that we should all be asking before we reach for those old familiar packets.
Germany’s confectionery trade organisation, the BDSI has issued a fresh warning that ‘many small and medium sized businesses are struggling to survive’ amid a backdrop of inflated energy costs, broken supply chains and high raw ingredients costs
The German Sugar Economic Association (WVZ) today published its second harvest and production estimate for 2022. Accordingly, sugar beet is grown in Germany on a cultivation area of around 361,000 ha. The estimated sugar beet yield is 69.3 t/ha. For the upcoming campaign, the WVZ expects a beet delivery of around 25 million tonnes. The amount of sugar produced from this is estimated at around 4 million tonnes.
Farmers in France are disappointed that early sugar beet are not up to the expected level. The first sugar beet yields recorded have ranged from 25 t/ha to 95 t/ha, according to Ghislain Malatesta, director at the Beet Technical Institute (ITB). Organic sugar beet yields have ranged between 0 t/ ha (in case of too much grass weeds, the plot is not harvested) to 80 t/ha (at Artenay). As expected, the rains in early September have lowered the level of sugar content in the beet. As of 25th September, the average sugar content is 18.5 °S, estimates the CGB. While this rainfall can restart the plant's growth process and facilitate harvesting, it leads to a loss of yield for producers who have harvested early after the recent rain.
Ditching oilseed crops for peas, preparing to cut herds and splashing out on tractor gadgets. That’s what European farmers are doing to try to cope with a worsening fertilizer crisis. The lengths they’re going to in order to apply less of the nutrients vital for growing staples like wheat and rapeseed highlights the continued threat the crunch poses to food output. Many of Europe’s fertilizer plants have closed as Russia’s war in Ukraine squeezes supplies of gas that nitrogen fertilizer is derived from. Some farmers secured fertilizer for this year’s harvest before prices soared, but now face much bigger bills as they start planting for next year’s crop. Plus, high energy costs are making it more expensive to run tractors and dry grain, risking more food inflation. “It’s impossible to plan,” said Adam Nowak, a farmer south of Warsaw in Poland.
French sugar and ethanol group Tereos has decided to close and dismantle its factory in Romania after talks with a local company interested in taking over the plant failed to go through, a spokesperson said. Tereos, the world's second largest sugar producer by volume, had said earlier this year it was planning to shut its Ludus factory. The Romanian agriculture minister at the time later said he was in contact with Tereos to try and save the sugar factory. "The Romanian Minister of Agriculture had seconded a private company to study the purchase of Tereos Romania. We were open to this possibility," a Tereos spokesperson told Reuters. "But the private company told us that it was unable to pursue the acquisition project," she added. "The question was not the price, mainly the timing. They had missed a (sugar beet) campaign."