Sugar on the boil again : Prices soar upto Rs 10 since Jan 13

Sugar on the boil again : Prices soar upto Rs 10 since Jan 13

Sugar on the boil again : Prices soar upto Rs 10 since Jan 13

However, there has been a moderate downward revision in the wholesale prices in leading markets like Delhi and Mumbai since January 13 when the Government announced a number of steps to rein in sugar prices after retail prices sniffed at Rs 50 per kg.

Significantly, this further spike in the retain prices comes after Food and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar had on January 13 announced many measures to contain soaring sugar prices and had said that the impact of these measures would be visible within at least 10-15 days on on the retail front. "It (decline in prices) would take at least 10-15 days to reflect in retail markets," Pawar had said announcing these measures to arrest the prices.

Faced with a tight demand-supply situation, the Government had announced increased domestic supply by allowing processing of imported raw sugar anywhere in the country. It also had extended the time to avail of the benefit of zero-duty import of white sugar till the end of December.

This was to expire in March. Following these measures, there was slight impact on wholesale prices though, as prices declined by up to Rs 3.50 a kg to Rs 41/kg in Delhi, an less than a rupee in Mumbai to Rs 40/kg, according to trade data.

Significantly, barring in Delhi and Bhubaneshwar the retail prices have shot up by up to Rs 10 a kg during the past nine days and not declined as expected, according to the latest Consumer Affairs Ministry data.

In Delhi and Bhubaneshwar, the retail prices declined by Rs 2-3 a kg to Rs 44/kg and 42/kg respectively, show the data. According to the Ministry data, retail prices in Kolkata and Chennai have climbed up by Rs 7-8 a kg to Rs 45/kg and Rs 42/kg, respectively, during the last ten days.

In Aizwal, the retail price has risen sharply by Rs 10 to Rs 35/kg. Similarly in Ahmedabad, sugar rates in retail outlets have jumped by Rs 4 a kg to Rs 44/kg, while Patna and Bangalore saw an increase of Rs 1-2 a kg to Rs 42/kg and Rs 40/kg, respectively, during the review period.

India, the world's largest consumer of the sweetener, is likely to produce nearly 16 million tonne in the current season, ending September 2010, against the demand of 23 million tonne. The gap is being met through imports.