Sugarcane crushing in the first half of September grew by 5.35% compared to the same period last year in Brazil. A total of 41.76 million tons were processed compared to 39.64 million. In the 23/24 harvest, crushing reached 448.33 million tons, compared to 406.33 million tons in the same period in the 22/23 cycle – an increase of 10.34%, reports Safras&Mercado
In the first half of September due to rainfall in the Center-South region, harvest operations were affected to a greater extent in the Araçatuba and Assis regions of the state of São Paulo, in Paraná and in Mato Grosso do Sul.
Productivity increased by 23%
Data from the Center for Sugarcane Technology (CTC) indicates that, in August, the productivity of sugarcane plantations in the Center-South was 90.5 tons of cane per hectare harvested. This figure represents an increase of 23.2% compared to the same period in the 2022/2023 harvest. The accumulated figure stands at 92.8 tons per hectare this harvest, compared to 75.7 tons per hectare in the last harvest – an increase of 23%. Due to the high yield per hectare observed in this cycle, the harvest is likely to be extended into the rainiest periods of the year, which may be amplified by the effect of El Niño. This situation could have an impact on the sugarcane processing capacity of the industries in the last quarter of 2023.
In the first half of September, 261 production units remained in operation in the Center-South region, 244 of them processing sugarcane, eight companies making ethanol from corn and nine flex-fuel plants. In the same period, in the 2022/23 harvest, there were 255 production units in operation.
With regard to the quality of the raw material, the level of Total Recoverable Sugars (ATR) recorded in the first half of September was 153.27 kg per ton of sugar cane, compared to 158.51 kg per ton in the 22/23 harvest – a negative variation of 3.31%. For the whole harvest, the indicator stands at 138.74 kg of ATR per ton (-0.92%).
Sugar and ethanol production
Sugar production in the first half of September totaled 3.12 million tons. This figure, when compared to the 2022/23 harvest of 2.87 million tons, represents an increase of 8.54%. In the year to date since April 1, production of the sweetener totals 29.26 million tons, compared to 24.65 million tons in the previous cycle (+18.68%).
In the first fifteen days of September, 2.12 billion liters (-0.44%) of ethanol were produced by units in the Center-South. Of the total volume produced, hydrous ethanol reached 1.25 billion liters (+2.14%), while anhydrous ethanol production totaled 867.32 million liters (-3.93%). From the start of the current agricultural cycle until September 16, biofuel production totaled 21.21 billion liters (+5.54%), of which 12.42 billion were hydrous ethanol (+1.64%) and 8.79 billion anhydrous (+11.59%).
Of the total ethanol production recorded in the first half of September, 13% came from corn, which produced 282.26 million liters this year, compared to 212.33 million liters in the same period of the 22/23 cycle – an increase of 32.93%. Since the beginning of the harvest, corn ethanol production has reached 2.75 billion liters – an increase of 44.79% compared to the same period last year.