Government Stays Committed to Ethanol Blending Target Despite Temporary Ban on Sugarcane Juice

Government Stays Committed to Ethanol Blending Target Despite Temporary Ban on Sugarcane Juice
Image by Bernd Muller from Pixabay

The government is committed to achieving a 20% ethanol blending target by 2025-26 despite a temporary ban on using sugarcane juice and sugar syrup due to uncertainties in cane output this season. To compensate, plans include promoting ethanol production from alternative sources like B and C-heavy molasses, damaged rice, and maize.

In the 2022-23 ethanol supply year, the government achieved a 12% ethanol blending with petrol. The current year’s target is 15%, requiring 690 litres of ethanol. The recent ban on sugarcane juice and sugar syrup is seen as a temporary measure, and the government denies any adverse impact on the ethanol blending program.

The ban is attributed to potential drops in cane production due to drought and rainfall in key states. However, officials emphasize that the situation hasn’t reached a point where the country needs to import ethanol.

B-heavy molasses will be allowed for ongoing offers, with the possibility of additional allowances in the future. The long-term plan remains intact, and the current pause is subject to review. Sugarcane production is estimated to be significantly lower than last year, with concerns about drought affecting Maharashtra and Karnataka.

Efforts to promote maize as feedstock for ethanol production are underway. A scheme involving cooperatives Nafed and NCCF aims to procure maize directly from farmers at a minimum support price, encouraging the use of maize in 120 grain-based distilleries across the country.

Despite challenges, the government assures its commitment to the ethanol blending program and is actively exploring diverse avenues to meet targets.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.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