Sugar yield quells ethanol shortage fear

Ethanol shortage concerns in Thailand have subsided on the good sugar yield from the latest sugar cane crop, providing abundant molasses for the ethanol industry, says a senior industrial official. Thai SugarMillers Corporation Ltd, which includes all Thai 52 sugar factories, said the current 2016/17 sugar crushing crop began on Dec 6, and has since found that the sugar yield was higher than last year’s. The crushing also produces substantial quantities of molasses, a byproduct that is used to produce ethanol, which is then blended with pure gasoline and sold to motorists as gasohol, assuaging fears regarding a possible ethanol shortage in the oil industry. “There are no concerns about an ethanol shortage at this moment,” said Sirivuth Siamphakdee, the chairman of the TSMC. In December 2016, mismanagement among ethanol factories and a delay in molasses production raised concerns about a possible ethanol shortage during the year-end period, when demand was higher. 

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