Sugar Prices Set To Rise After Six Year Lows

Jun 29 2015

Harvesting Sugar Cane In Barbados

Harvesting sugar cane in Barbados.

Market Position
High stocks and weak demand continue to dominate the global sugar markets. In May traded prices in both London and New York reached 6 year lows, partly as a result of Thailand’s large surplus of raw sugar, although the general consensus is that the market price from June onwards will slowly start to increase. The Brazilian stocks which are at a 3 year low has started to ease slightly with the onset of drier weather in June, improving harvesting and sugar production. With the northern hemisphere cane harvests now complete, attention now turns to the Brazilian harvest over the next three and a half months. In the EU, beet planted area is down on average 13%, as a result of the high surplus sugar stock, from 2014/15 record crop.

Europe
Following the record 2014/15 beet crop of 19 million tonnes, the 2015/16 planted area is down on average 13%. In France the planted area is down 5.5%, Germany is down 15%, Netherlands down 20%, UK down 20%, Sweden down 40% and Italy down 15.3%. The weather until the end of August will ultimately determine the sugar yields, the forecast total for the 2015/16 EU production is 16.5 mln tonnes. Furthermore, 2014/15 EU sugar imports declined for the first time since 2006 to 2.6 mln tonnes, which resulted in high sales of quota white sugar, leading to a substantial fall in quota stock levels. As a result EU prices will slightly increase in line with CXL imported sugar. EU producers are experiencing lower profits, with some of their refineries now starting to close and the start of a contraction in the number of sugar companies in the EU, as the European sugar industry prepares itself for 2017, when sugar production quotas will end after almost five decades, resulting in unlimited beet production, increased competition across the EU, and the EU’s return as a dominant sugar producer on the world market. In Russia 80,000 hectares of sugar beets were damaged due to severe winds, leading to half the damaged area having to be resown, which is expected to limit yields for the 2015/16 crop, due to be harvested in August. Early estimates are for 4.5 million tonnes of sugar to be produced, as a result of increased planted area, up by 9% on 2014/15.

Brazil
The harvest in Brazil which began in April has been impacted due to heavy rainfall in May which has reduced the amount of cane that could be harvested, and reduced sugar yields from the crushed cane. The impact has seen sugar production down 17% compared to last year’s output. However the wet weather will boost cane yields later in the year, and produce a strong tail end to the crushing season. Improved weather during the month of June should result in production catching up on last season, so for the 2015/16 season, estimates remain at 588 mln tonnes of cane, producing 33 mln tonnes of sugar, 1 million tonnes more than last year. The demand for ethanol has been higher this year due to gasoline prices increasing, however sugar export prices remain competitive when compared to biofuel sales, but the availability of sugar remains relatively limited.

Thailand
The 2014/15 harvest has ended with a higher cane crushed than expected, but the sugar produced is down by 1% at 11.1 million tonnes, compared to last season, the result of lower sucrose yields, due to drier than average weather. These drier conditions have continued through 2015 which is a significant risk to the 2015/16 crop. Raw sugar exports have been slow in 2015, despite a huge amount of stocks held, and this is starting to affect the world market price.

India
The cane harvest has nearly finished across the major growing states, with sugar production estimated to reach 28 million tonnes, with a possible further 2-300,000 tonnes to the end of September. This is the highest production rate since the 2006/07 season, which will further aggravated an already over-supply in the market, putting pressure on internal Indian sugar prices which have fallen by 20% since the start of the 2014/15 season. It is unlikely that the government will purchase sugar for domestic buffer stocks, putting further pressure on the world market. Despite the high stock levels, there has been no reduced planted cane acreage for 2015/16 season, potentially leading to another year of surplus production. The monsoon rains over the next three months will determine the yields and size of India’s 2015/16 surplus stocks.

Australia
Lower rainfall in Queensland could affect the 2015/16 crop, with less than half the average rain falling. Early estimates are for 4.68 million tonnes of sugar to be produced, up on the 4.4 mln tonnes produced in 2014/15 season.

USA/Mexico
Sugar beet planting in May was ahead of normal and planted area was also up 2% on last season, which raises hopes for improved yields this year. The decision of the anti-dumping investigation between the US and Mexico is expected early in September. The 2014/15 Mexican harvest will end earlier than last season, with sugar production estimated at 5.75 million tonnes, compared to 6.0 mln tonnes in 2013/14. Prolonged dry weather through June could see sugar production reach last season’s figure, allowing Mexico to fulfil its US supply quota before September.

China
Dry weather enabled good cane crushing in May during the final weeks of the 2014/15 crop. Cane sugar production is estimated to be 6.3 million tonnes, down 26% as a result of reduced planted acreage and lack of rains, which could also affect the 2015/16 crop.

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Sugar Powers Epic Charitable Cycle Ride For Top Gear Stunt Man

Jun 12 2015

MND Cycle'15b

Team at the BRDC, surrounded by beautiful Jaguars that Neil Cunningham raced.

Ragus Pure Sugar Energy helped power a team of 6 cyclists on an epic 24 hour endurance ride covering 220 miles across the continent from Silverstone race circuit in Northamptonshire to the world famous Le Mans 24 hour race in France which takes place this weekend. This continues Ragus’ support of raising awareness for Motor Neurone Disease (MND) to enable further advancement in the research of this horrific disease.

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Ben Eastick waves the Union flag to start the challenge with a lap of the Silverstone Circuit.

Over the last three years, Ragus has supported various fundraising events in aid of Neil Cunningham who has been bravely battling MND over the last five years. From New Zealand originally, Neil was a successful athlete as a surfer in his home town of Swansea and a professional racing driver for twenty seven years, who competed at numerous Le Mans 24 hrs. Latterly Neil found fame as one of Top Gear’s Stigs and a stunt driver on the Top Gear Live show, as well as featuring in the James Bond film, Quantum of Solace.

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Adam Bere organiser of the event at Le Mans within the 24hrs.

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No. 18 Porsche on pole position for Le Mans 2015.

Motor Neurone Disease affects both young and old alike, but particularly occurs in young fit and healthy people. Recent advances in research has given hope that a cure for this lesser known disease is imminent.

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Ben Eastick and the team.

The target for the 24hrs Le Mans cycle ride is to raise £25,000 of which over 51% has been raised so far. This money together with over £100,000 raised in the last 3 years will be multiplied by a factor of three from corporate funding.

MND Le Mans Logo

 

With special thanks to The British Racing Drivers Club www.brdc.co.uk & Silverstone Circuits www.silverstone.co.uk

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If you would like to contribute to this worthy cause, please click on either of the two links below:

https://justgiving.com/24hrstolemans/
https://racing4mnd.org

 

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Ragus Team Witness British GT Silverstone Podium

Jun 01 2015

Ecurie Ecosse GT Silverstone 2015

Ragus BMW Z4 GT3 serving a 20 sec ‘success’ penalty.

Ecurie Ecosse powered by Ragus Pure Sugar Energy saw drivers Marco Attard and Alexander Sims extend their Avon Tyres British GT Championship lead after finishing 3rd in the series’ blue riband three hour Silverstone 500 race on Sunday afternoon. It was the legendary Scottish squad’s third consecutive podium finish of the campaign after winning last time out at Rockingham and coming home 3rd at Oulton Park.

After qualifying 3rd in the dry on Saturday, the start of Sunday’s initially sodden race saw Barwell’s team-mate Jon Minshaw enjoy a fierce battle with Attard before a safety car period after half an hour prompted Ecurie Ecosse, along with most of its rivals to pit early and install Alexander Sims. So long was the safety car out, the BMW factory driver was called back in to the pits after just a handful of laps to switch to dry slick tyres and to put Marco Attard back aboard for his second driving stint.

Ragus' Theresa Pereira with Ben Eastick in the pit garage

Ragus’ Theresa Pereira with Ben Eastick in the pit garage.

With teams choosing different tactics the race’s definitive picture did not emerge until Sims climbed behind the wheel for the final time with an hour of the race remaining, and subsequently reeled off the race’s three fastest laps, which helped Sims close in and take 5th place before the afternoon’s second safety car period, caused by the leader crashing his Aston Martin.

Once racing resumed Sims carried out an audacious sweep around the outside of Daniel Lloyd’s Aston Martin at Stowe and along the Vale. There was little time to make further progress thereafter and Sims ultimately finished just 7.1 seconds behind the race winning McLaren, and 2nd place BMW Z4, despite having to serve a 20 second ‘success’ penalty for winning at Rockingham.

A delighted Ragus team of Ben Eastick, Frank O’Kelly and Theresa Pereira were there to witness the action as it unfolded.

Theresa & Ben with Blancpain drivers Oliver Bryant & Alasdair McCaig view the action from the BRDC

Theresa & Ben with Blancpain drivers Oliver Bryant & Alasdair McCaig view the action from the BRDC.

Ecurie Ecosse

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

http://www.ecurieecosse.com

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