Texas Tech releases global sugar report commissioned by growers
Texas Tech University on Tuesday released a report on global sugar subsidies that was commissioned by the American Sugar Alliance, which represents cane and beet growers.
The study, authored by Darren Hudson, director of Texas Tech’s International Center for Agricultural Competitiveness, included profiles of 21 foreign countries that account for 80 percent of global sugar production and 83 percent of exports.
The major market players include Brazil, India, and Thailand, as well as China, Japan, Mexico, Canada, and the European Union.
“There’s one common thread connecting every country,” Hudson said in an ASA news release. “They all subsidize their own country’s sugar production to the detriment of others.”
Tariffs were a commonality among all countries in the Texas Tech report, with some in excess of 100 percent. Domestic price supports, debt forgiveness, and handouts for inputs such as fertilizer and equipment were also widespread, the report said.
Ethanol programs that subsidize the use of sugar as a feedstock act as a price support and are gaining in popularity, the report found.
ASA has endorsed a concept introduced by Rep. Ted Yoho, R-Fla., known as the Zero-for-Zero sugar policy, which would end America’s no-cost policy in exchange for other countries eliminating their trade-distorting programs.