Another raft of sugar suppliers have raised their prices, as tight supply shows no signs of letting up.

British Sugar announced a €125 per tonne increase on its sugar products for deliveries from 7 March 2011, while British Baker has been told by a customer of supplier Kent Foods that it is increasing the price of its sugar by €125/t.

Peter Hough, business development director at Renshaw Napier told British Baker it will increase the price of its white sugar by a further €85/t on 7 March 2011, following an increase in all its sugar prices of €42/t on 3 January.

Explained Hough: “Our two major UK sugar suppliers have increased their contracted prices to us this year by €176/t and €125/t respectively. In response, we have reluctantly had to pass on these increases to our customers in order to maintain supply.”

In a letter to its customers dated 14 February, British Sugar said the impact of this winter’s weather on the UK sugar beet crop was “far worse than initially feared”. It added that it had made significant changes to the way it operates, using different processing techniques, enabling it “to take delivery of beet that would previously have been rejected”. However, it said these have been at a substantial cost.

BB understands that Tate & Lyle has not implemented a further increase since its €176 m/t hike, effective from 3 January 2011, which was announced in November.

Ben Eastick, director of specialist sugars supplier Ragus, said suppliers were reneging on contracts left, right and centre, and he couldn’t see prices coming back down for another three years, once stocks have had a chance to build up.

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