Maharashtra has emerged as the single largest sugar producer in the world with the production of 137.36 lakh metric tonnes after the completion of the sugarcane crushing season for 2021-22 with India on top with the production of 355 lakh metric tonnes followed by Brazil at 330 lakh metric tonnes. Thailand ranked fourth with sugar production of 110 lakh metric tonnes while China and Russia came later with sugar production of 100 lakh metric tonnes. The state is expected to produce 138 lakh metric tonnes of sugar during the upcoming crushing season for 2022-23.
Chief Minister Eknath Shinde at the Ministerial Committee headed by him showered praise over Maharashtra’s performance.
The sugarcane cultivation is on 14.87 lakh hectares with average sugar recovery of 11.20%.
At the same meeting, it was decided that the sugarcane crushing season for 2022-23 in Maharashtra will begin on October 15 instead of October 1 given the ongoing rains mainly in the sugarcane growing areas of the state.
During the 2021-22 season, about 200 sugar factories crushed a record 1322 lakh metric tonnes of sugarcane and paid a fair and remunerative price (FRP) of Rs 42,375 crore which is 97.87% total payable FRP of Rs 43,296 crore.
Sugar Commissioner Shekhar Gaikwad in his presentation submitted that during 2022-23 sugarcane cultivation has been on 14.87 lakh hectares of land with the sugarcane availability of 95 tonnes per hectare. About 203 sugar factories including cooperative and private are expected to participate in the coming crushing season to produce 138 lakh metric tonnes of sugar. He brought to the Ministerial Committee’s notice that the state produced 137.36 lakh metric tonnes of sugar surpassing Uttar Pradesh in 2021-22 season.
This year's crushing season is expected to be for 160 days on average and the FRP for the 10.25 percent basic sugar recovery has been fixed at Rs 3050 per metric ton while for recovery of 9.5% or less FRP payable by the factories to the sugarcane growers is decided at Rs 2821.25 per metric ton.
Before the commencement of the crushing season, the state will have a sugar stock of 30 lakh metric tonnes. The sugar consumption in Maharashtra in the country is estimated at 130 lakh metric tonnes while at the country level it is 300 lakh metric tonnes. The state is expected to export 60 lakh metric tonnes.
In the case of ethanol production, Maharashtra has 35 per cent share at the national level with an annual production capacity of 211.37 crore litres.
According to the Chief Minister’s Office, it was decided to send a letter to the central government with a plea to maintain the last year's policy regarding open general license (Open General Licence) for sugar export.
CM emphasised the need for mechanisation for sugarcane cutting and power generation through cogeneration projects in the state.