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Magyar Cukor processes 50% more sugar beet at refinery

Magyar Cukor, owned by Austria's Agrana, expects to process 730,000 tons of sugar beet at its refinery in Kaposvár - the last one operating in Hungary - this season, one and a half times more than last season, CEO Béla Fischer said at a press conference in Budapest on Thursday.

This year's sugar beet harvest was much bigger than the 573,000 tons brought in by Hungarian farmers in 2008, according to data from the Central Statistics Office (KSH).

Magyar Cukor will refine 105,000 tons of sugar at its refinery and it will import about 50,000 tons, enough to meet half of domestic demand, Fischer said.

Hungary's sugar quota is 105,000 tons.

Asked about the company's revenue and costs, Fischer said only that revenue for the company's business year ending February 28 would be HUF 25 billion-HUF 30 billion, level with that in the previous business year.

Magyar Cukor will finish its refining season in January.

Almost all of Hungary's sugar refineries were shut down after the 2007 season, when the EU slashed sugar price subsidies and offered farmers and refineries incentives to get out of the business. (MTI-ECONEWS)