The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service on June 12 announced the fiscal 2016 raw and refined sugar tariff-rate quotas and increased the 2015 specialty sugar T.R.Q.
The U.S.D.A. established the fiscal 2016 (2015-16 beginning Oct. 1, 2015) raw cane sugar T.R.Q. at 1,231,497 short tons, raw value, the minimum required under the World Trade Organization Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture.
The fiscal 2016 refined sugar T.R.Q. was established at 145,505 short tons, raw value, of which 123,079 tons is reserved for specialty sugars as defined by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. The total refined sugar T.R.Q. includes a 24,251-ton minimum W.T.O. commitment, of which 1,825 tons is reserved for specialty sugar.
T.R.Q. raw cane sugar may enter the United States until Sept. 30, 2016, the U.S.D.A. said. The specialty sugar T.R.Q. is first-come, first-served, and may enter the United States in five tranches: 1,825 tons open to all specialty sugars on Oct. 9, 2015; and 30,314 tons each in the remaining four tranches, for organic sugar and other specialty sugars not produced commercially in the United States or reasonably available from domestic sources, that open Oct. 23, 2015, Jan. 8, 2016, April 8, 2016, and July 8, 2016.
The U.S.T.R. will allocate the raw and refined sugar T.R.Q.s (excluding the 123,079-ton specialty sugar T.R.Q.) among supplying countries and customs areas at a later date.
The U.S.D.A. also increased the fiscal year 2015 (2014-15 that ends Sept. 30, 2015) specialty sugar T.R.Q. by 22,046 short tons, raw value. The increased amount may enter the United States beginning July 10, 2015, and raises the final tranche of fiscal 2015 from 24,306 tons to 46,352 tons.
“The increase will accommodate the expanding demand for organic sugar and other specialty sugars that are not currently produced or available from domestic sources,” the U.S.D.A. said.