NEW YORK, Sept 10 (Reuters) - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) increased its projection for sugar use in the United States in 2021/22 by 68,000 tonnes to 11.2 million tonnes, and raised its estimates for imports.
In its monthly supply and demand report, the USDA said imports are now seen at 2.9 million tonnes for the new season that starts in October, up from the previous estimate of 2.8 million.
Any additional sugar is likely to come from countries other than Mexico, the traditional supplier for the U.S. market.
The USDA slashed its projection for imports from Mexico by 25 percent to .98 million tonnes, while it increased the so-called TRQ import quota, a lower-tariff volume, by 30 percent to 1.6 million tonnes.
Mexico's sugar production in 2020/21 was smaller than expected due to drier-than-normal weather.
The USDA also increased its outlook for domestic sugar production as sugarbeet agricultural yields improved. U.S. sugar production was estimated at 8.3 million tonnes, versus the estimate of 8.2 million tonnes in August.
With the changes, the stocks-to-use ratio was seen at 13.5 percent, indicating a balanced supply.