By Peter Buzzanell*
About 10% of Nation’s Sugar Production Comes from Domestically Grown Beets; Remainder from Imported Raw Cane Sugar Refined in Canada
Canada’s beet sugar production has evolved from several plants to one located in Alberta. The bulk of Canadian sugar supplies come from imported raw cane sugar processed at three refineries, located in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver, respectively. The resulting refined sugar is marketed to individual buyers in the retail market and mainly to large customers in the country’s beverage and food industry.
Corn sweeteners are produced in eastern Canada and compete in sweetener markets with sugar. Canada is also a major producer of maple syrup and honey, with exports going mainly to the U.S. market. Canada has recently initiated an
ethanol program to mix ethanol with gasoline, using corn and wheat as the major feedstocks.
Rising production costs and growing ethanol use in Brazil,
combined with policy-induced production swings across Asian countries,
are the main sources of higher and more-volatile sugar prices.
By Michael McConnell, Erik Dohlman & Stephen Haley*
World sugar prices soared to a 29-year high of nearly 30 cents a pound in early 2010 before falling back to half that level by early summer.** Still, they remain 50% higher than average over the past 20 years. Was this price spike a temporary oscillation caused by a supply shock, or does it reflect a more permanent fundamental shift in global market dynamics?
Editor & General Manager of The Sugarbeet Grower