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LMC offers specialised expertise and objective analysis on the full range of issues affecting sugar and other sweeteners. Our goal is to help clients to plan effectively and successfully: to identify and seize opportunities and pre-empt threats.

Our consultancy work is wide ranging and ranges from due diligence work assessing the viability of new projects, benchmarking performance and competitiveness, market and price forecasting to strategic analysis.  

Find below details of the broad range of LMC consultancy services that we can provide.

Experience and Expertise

Examples of consultancy projects
The project analysed and recommended how a major agri-business company could best develop and enhance its crop protection business in the sugar sector across the entire value chain. The report examined the structure of processing and trade of sugar, identified the most important players both in terms of countries and trade houses in the global value chain, indicated the most relevant needs of those players, examined the interaction between players across the value chain and recommended how the company should approach the value chain(s) strategically.

The report focused on the industry's cost competitiveness at each stage of the production process, from the field performance to the final sale in the industry's main raw and white sugar export markets. This involved contrasting the industry's key field and factory performance indicators with those of its competitors and facilitated the identification of the industry's major strengths and weaknesses.

The report comprised three parts. The first part analyzed the technical and cost competitiveness of the Louisiana industry relative to its competitors in the US and Mexico. The second part analyzed the likely impact of the NAFTA agreement on the US sugar market. The final part proposed and evaluated strategic options designed to ensure the future profitability of the Louisiana industry.

LMC assessed the industry's competitive performance, its markets, its cane payment and profit sharing systems, and alternative options for the plan, as well as examining certain public policy  implications of the plan.

A detailed review of the main value added products made from molasses and bagasse. It examined the composition and outlook for each of these products, which ranged from citric acid and furfuryl alcohol to xanthan gum, and described the major producers and the behaviour of prices and profitability. Barriers to entry, in terms of technology and marketing, were also assessed.

This included a detailed examination of the cost competitiveness of a selection of cane mills, beet factories and sugar refineries. This information, together with a broader assessment of sugar quality, and the technical and financial performance of each factory, was used to develop a sugar procurement strategy for a major end user. Extensive fieldwork was undertaken in Guangxi, Yunnan, Guangdong and Heilongjiang provinces.




The volume of sugar purchased by major end use company. For each end use company the study identified the principal sugar suppliers and volumes supplied. The volume of sugar purchased by each company was further dis-aggregated by the end use sector.

In particular, the analysis focused on an evaluation of the welfare impact of the reform options under consideration by the European Commission, and the identification of the option that would best serve the long term development interests of the LDCs.

For a US beet grower group, the study assessed the nature and evolution of the US beet co-operatives, including their basic characteristics, financing, and operation, and provided a brief overview of the US sugar sector and US sugar policy
 

The analysis was undertaken as part of a financial restructuring exercise, taking into account changes to the domestic sugar industry and the company's operation, technical efficiency and costs of production.

This included an analysis of the refinery's likely production costs and of the future revenue streams that could be expected from sales to the domestic and regional markets, as well as identification of the major strengths and weaknesses of the project.

A description of the cane payment and revenue sharing systems in place in four of the world's leading cane sugar industries: South Africa, Australia, Colombia and Argentina, with a detailed description of the way that growers are paid for their cane, and how the revenue from the sale of sugar is shared between miller and grower.

A detailed analysis of the field and factory production costs for ten sugar mills in the state of São Paulo, all of which were visited during the course of fieldwork for the study, describing the key influences on costs in the field and in the factory, and giving detailed cost profiles for each of the mills visited.

The study identified a series of projects, including cane production, processing, value addition and post-production logistics, designed to enhance the competitive position of these industries. It evaluated the social, economic and financial benefits and costs of each project, as well as the overall funding requirement of the action plans.

A detailed examination of the cost-competitiveness of cane refining and beet processing sectors in the EU. Each sector in the UK, France, Finland and Portugal was evaluated, and conclusions on the role and significance of the EU's refining aid were drawn.

The study estimated the likely level of the market premium in the EU during the period 2009/10 to 2015/2016. The analysis considered the outlook for the future supply/demand balance in the EU and the likely allocation of production quotas between producers, the costs incurred by each producer, including third countries, when supplying the EU market and whether sugar from the third countries will enter the EU market as raw or white.

The study determined whether there is a need for additional sugar terminal capacity in Thailand and the best strategy making a potential investment in an export terminal.

A review of the impact of Mercosur on the pricing of sugar and maize in Argentina, which included price and cost forecasts for both commodities.

This major project identified countries offering the best investment oppourtunities in sugar millimg/refining. This included an evaluation of different entry methods: whether through acquisition, joint venture or greenfield. The analysis was presented in the form of a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, oppourtunities and threats) analysis, and included an assessment of any synergies with the core business activities and management strengths of the client.

Against the backdrop of EU sugar reform this report provided up-to-date information on raw sugar procurement options available to a sugar producer. This information was used to developthe company's commercial offers to potential suppliers.

An overview of the EU speciality sugar market. Special emphasis is placed on Mauritius as the key supplier of speciality sugars to the EU. The study examines the volume of speciality sugar exported from Mauritius to the EU, the type of speciality sugar, key destination markets and the key buyers of these speciality sugars. The study also examines the commercial premia associated with shipping speciality sugars to the EU vis a vis bulk raw sugar.

An analysis of currnet and future market fundamentals, the size ofthe industry, the level of technical performance achieved in the field and factory and the origin of imports. Details of Russian sugar policy and its outlook including the import regime, price dynamics underpinning the domestic sugar market and the cost of producing white sugar in beet factories, both from domestically grown beet and imported raw sugar were examined.

Disaggregated estimates of the demand for different nutritive and intense sweeteners in the main end-use sectors, such as soft drinks, baked goods, confectionery, dairy products and canned foods, in each of four countries.

This included a detailed analysis of the cost competitiveness of each Canadian sugar producer and Central American supplier, and an assessment of their long term prospects in light of trade liberalization.

On behalf of the UK government's Department of International Development, an analysis of the likely range of reforms of the EU sugar regime, and their effect on the preferential trading arrangements with the EU’s 16 African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) suppliers, and the impact on the UK refining industry. The cost competitiveness of each ACP sugar supplying country and its potential for the industry's long-term survival in light of likely reforms were assessed.

Key project components included verifying the local and foreign cost components of the project’s capital expenditure; the size and structure of the domestic sugar market; the scope for, and the cost of, supplying regional markets; competition in the local and neighboring markets from alternative regional suppliers; as well as the future potential for increasing the scale of the refinery to exploit economies of scale as demand grows

The objective of this study was to determine the future evolution of the US beet processing industry. The first part of the study reviewed the changes in recent years in the sector, particularly in ownership and capacity, together with the changed attitude towards processing and the new beet payment systems to encourage higher yields. Farmers' willingness to supply beet was examined by means of a survey of production conditions, by region, and an analysis of production costs and returns from both sugar and alternative crops. The constraints of processing capacity were also examined by region, and this was followed by an examination of the trend in factory size, to estimate the underlying trend in US beet sugar output.

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