Ebro Puleva, Spain’s largest food group, has insisted it is “impossible” to estimate the impact of EU sugar reform on its business after reports that the company would have to slash production.

The company said the impact of EU reforms would not be calculated until talks had been held between the sugar industry, growers’ associations and regulatory authorities, which are slated before the end of the year.

“Until the final terms of those agreements have been established, foreseeably before the end of 2007, it is not possible to estimate the economic impact that the [reforms] will have on the accounts of Azucarera Ebro,” the company said.

The EU is providing financial incentives for sugar growers to quit production in order to bring supply and demand back into balance.

Reports in Spain had suggested that Ebro Puleva would have to cut its sugar production by up to 50% in the wake of the reforms. The company’s sugar arm, Azucarera Ebro, accounts for around a quarter of its annual profits.

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