The approaching official start of the 2017/18 harvest season in Brazil's Centre-South region is depressing ethanol prices, according to economic research centre Cepea.

Cepea said on Monday that values fell for yet another week. Prices of hydrous ethanol were down 1.16% in the week through March 3 compared to the previous week, reaching BRL 1.5662 (USD 0.5/EUR 0.47) per litre, excluding taxes. This is the lowest seen in half a year.

Anhydrous ethanol was down 2.38% to BRL 1.6734. Cepea said that in the Sao Paulo market some mills are offering to sell large volumes in a bid to free up their tanks for the new crop. There are mills that have already begun crushing, it noted. At the same time, distributors have been working with existing inventories or contracted volumes.