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EU sugar update

Confectionery SMEs in Europe lobby for sugar quota abolition

By Oliver Nieburg+

Last updated on 28-Feb-2013 at 14:25 GMT2013-02-28T14:25:58Z

Caobisco claims small confectioners are hardest hit by sugar quota regime
Caobisco claims small confectioners are hardest hit by sugar quota regime

Small to medium sized confectioners in Europe yesterday lobbied the European Parliament to end sugar quotas in 2015; a regime they claim has led to inflated prices, scarce supplies, job losses and bankruptcies.

CEOs from small and medium-sized confectioners belonging to Caobisco, the Association of Chocolate, Biscuit and Confectionery Industries in Europe, met this week with Members of the European Parliament (EP) to campaign for EU sugar quotas to be abolished in 2015, ahead of a vote on 11 March in an EP plenary session.

Last month, the EP’s Agriculture Committee voted for EU sugar quotas to be extended until 2020. See HERE.

“Production quotas leading to the artificial inflation of the average EU price of sugar to more than the double of the world market price, have already led to bankruptcies, suspension or termination of production lines, loss of export markets and job losses across Europe,” said Caobisco in a statement.

The organizations are among 27 groups including the CIUS (Committee of European Users of Sugar) and German confectionery association BDSI that today sent an open letter to European leaders which said that the quotas restricted EU sugar production to only 80% of EU demand and kept European sugar prices more than 50% above going market prices on the global open market.

“The top priorities for the EU at present are jobs, competitiveness and growth. Continuation of EU sugar quotas delivers on none of these,” said the open letter .

Independent French think tank, Institut Choiseul, recently released a report that said EU confectioners were suffering and called quotas to be abolished at the earliest opportunity.

The EP plenary is set to make a vote on sugar reform on 11 March.

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