European food companies call for elimination of sugar quotas

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Food companies are calling on the EU to eliminate sugar quotas as the shortage of sugar led to sharp price increases following reforms in 2009.

The EU completed a four-year reform of the sugar market in 2009, which cut subsidies to producers and introduced quotas limiting exports.

When the price of sugar on the international market increased to a three-decade high in 2010, the European producers sold their sugar elsewhere, leading to temporary shortages in Portugal, following which the European Commission imposed fresh quotas limiting imports.

R&R Ice Cream, the leading private-label producer of ice-cream in Europe, said it is struggling to find sugar for next year’s production, while Swiss food giant Nestlé said that there is not enough supply in the region to meet demand.

Nestlé also said that significant changes are required to bring sufficient transparency and fair conditions to the market, and added that EU reform should phase out sugar production quotas as of 2015.

Source: Food Processing Technology