Sugar Processing in the US Industry Market Research Report Now Available from IBISWorld

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The industry has experienced modest growth during the five years to 2012 due to a rise in sugar consumption. However, cheap imports are expected to pressure revenue and profit in the coming years, and downstream demand will fall as consumers opt for no-calorie sweeteners. To support future revenue growth, sugar processors will rely on alternative energy opportunities and expansion to other sectors of the economy. For these reasons, industry research firm IBISWorld has added a report on the Sugar Processing industry to its growing industry report collection.

IBISWorld Market Research

IBISWorld Market Research

Low-cost imports and sugar substitutes will inhibit revenue growth for sugar processors

The US Sugar Processing industry has benefitted from increased demand since 2009, when research findings pointed to high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) as a likely health hazard leading to diabetes and obesity. “In response to a shift in consumer demand away from HFCS toward sugar, downstream producers made efforts to switch their preferred sweetener from HFCS to sugar, which benefited the Sugar Processing industry,” says IBISWorld industry analyst Mary Nanfelt. In 2010 and through 2011, rising sugarcane prices in India and other countries also heightened revenue domestically. Revenue is forecast to grow in 2012 because prices remain high. IBISWorld expects industry revenue to grow at an annualized rate of 2.2% through the five years to 2012, totaling $9.0 billion.

Ownership concentration in the US Sugar Processing industry is medium. The top producers are American Crystal Sugar Company, Imperial Sugar Company and Snake River Sugar Company. After the recession, more firms entered the industry to take advantage of high sugar prices. From 2007 to 2012, the number industry operators and establishments are forecast to increase. Regulatory measures have been, and will continue to be, important revenue and profit determinants for the industry. The US government provides loans, sets marketing allotment quotas and determines tariff rate quotas to keep domestic sugar prices inflated. During the five years to 2012, IBISWorld expects these policies to sustain industry profit.

Quickly ascending imports are expected to limit revenue and profit growth for sugar processors. “Since 2008, open trade relations between the United States and Mexico have allowed low-priced imports to come into the domestic market, fulfilling unmet domestic demand,” continues Nanfelt. Import values have grown over the five-year period, and they are estimated to continue growing over the five years to 2017. Alternative energies may be able to push industry revenue and profit up during the next five years. Bagasse, a by-product of sugarcane refining, is currently being used as an electricity source for refineries. If the industry is able to expand this into other sectors of the economy, sugar processing may be pushed forward into its growth phase. However, IBISWorld forecasts many of the current trends to continue into the next five years. Low-cost imports will provide sugar buyers with an alternative to the domestic product. Consumers are expected to take advantage of sugar substitutes, which are becoming prevalent on the market. Consequently, revenue growth will slow in the next five years. For more information, visit IBISWorld’s Sugar Processing in the US industry report page.

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IBISWorld industry Report Key Topics

The industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in manufacturing raw sugar, liquid sugar and refined sugar from sugarcane, raw cane sugar and sugar beets. The US Sugar Processing industry acquires its raw material from sugarcane growers. Sugar refiners also buy from millers. This raw material is processed into a range of sugar products for industrial and consumer uses. The final products are sold to grocery wholesalers, retailers and food manufacturers.

Industry Performance
Executive Summary
Key External Drivers
Current Performance
Industry Outlook
Industry Life Cycle
Products & Markets
Supply Chain
Products & Services
Major Markets
Globalization & Trade
Business Locations
Competitive Landscape
Market Share Concentration
Key Success Factors
Cost Structure Benchmarks
Barriers to Entry
Major Companies
Operating Conditions
Capital Intensity
Key Statistics
Industry Data
Annual Change
Key Ratios

About IBISWorld Inc.
Recognized as the nation’s most trusted independent source of industry and market research, IBISWorld offers a comprehensive database of unique information and analysis on every US industry. With an extensive online portfolio, valued for its depth and scope, the company equips clients with the insight necessary to make better business decisions. Headquartered in Los Angeles, IBISWorld serves a range of business, professional service and government organizations through more than 10 locations worldwide. For more information, visit or call 1-800-330-3772.

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Gavin Smith
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