Govt. move allowing cane juice use for ethanol to offer ‘partial relief’

The government’s decision on Friday allowing sugar mills to use both sugarcane juice and B-heavy molasses to produce ethanol subject to a cap of 17 lakh tonnes, will provide ‘partial relief’ to sugar mills, a mill owner said.

The rollback of the December 7 directive of the Department of Food and Public Distribution asking sugar mills to not produce ethanol from sugarcane juice and syrup followed representations by the industry seeking a reversal of the decision.

In a communication dated December 15, the department said oil marketing companies (OMCs) will use revised allocation of sugarcane juice and B heavy molasses based ethanol for the ethanol year 2023-2024 to each distillery and sugar mills and distilleries should “supply ethanol strictly” as the per the revised quantity specified. There will be no diversion of sugarcane juice and B heavy molasses for production of rectified spirit or extra neutral alcohol. All molasses based distilleries should “endeavour to make ethanol from C Heavy molasses,” it said.

An ethanol-producing sugar mill owner, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the exact impact of the reversal would be known only after the oil marketing companies (OMCs) issued the allocation quantities. While the latest order would give some relief to sugar mills and distilleries, there would still be reductions in the overall volume of ethanol produced, he added.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *