If you bought a bag of sugar in the past year or two, you've probably noticed that it costs more than it used to. Sugar prices have recently flirted with a 30-year high. And since many companies buy lots of bags of sugar, the price hikes have hit them even harder.
Rising sugar costs can pressure the profit margins of heavy consumers such as Hershey
Some companies will feel less of a pinch than usual by reducing their sugar consumption. Alternative sweeteners and low-sugar or no-sugar drinks have grown in prominence at Coca-Cola
Sweet or sour future
Sugar prices have risen both from a surge in demand, as sugar-based ethanol is increasingly used for fuel, and from supply cutbacks by Brazil and other producers. Alas, supply may not rise much anytime soon. U.S. Department of Agriculture recently rejected Monsanto's
That might seem like good news for companies such as Imperial Sugar
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