LONDON, April 16 (Reuters) - Raw sugar futures fell on Monday, drifting towards last week’s 2-1/2 year low due to excess supplies, while cocoa edged up.
* May raw sugar fell 0.06 cent, or 0.5 percent, to 12.02 cents per lb by 1102 GMT. The front month slumped to a 2-1/2 year low of 11.93 cents last week.
* Dealers said the market remained well supplied despite a switch towards using more cane for ethanol in Brazil and the prospect of more producer selling was continuing to keep the market on the defensive.
* Speculators trimmed their bearish stance in raw sugar contracts on ICE Futures U.S. in the week to April 10, U.S. government data showed on Friday.
* “The net short of the Non-Index Funds fell a touch, despite the flat price continuing to go down, which may indicate that producers have been ‘throwing in the towel’,” Marex said in a report on Monday.
* “If so, that would imply that the funds are ‘winning’ and the producers ‘losing’, which might encourage the funds to hold their shorts.”
* August white sugar fell $1.40, or 0.4 percent, to $337.60 per tonne after dipping to a low of $336.80 - the weakest for the front month since September 2015.
* Commodities trader ED&F Man bought 140,750 tonnes of white sugar against the May contract on ICE Futures Europe which expired on Friday, according to the company and exchange data, confirming earlier trade reports.
* July New York cocoa was up $13, or 0.5 percent, at $2,589 a tonne.
* Dealers said first quarter grind data should provide a focus this week.
* Europe’s Q1 grind, scheduled to be issued on Wednesday, is expected to show a year-on-year rise of two to four percent. The grind showed year-on-year increases in every quarter last year.
* North American grind data is due to be released on Thursday, with estimates ranging from 1.5 percent lower to 2 percent higher.
* July London cocoa rose 4 pounds, or 0.2 percent, to 1,768 pounds a tonne with gains capped by the strength of sterling.
* July arabica coffee was down 0.30 cent, or 0.25 percent, at $1.1920 per lb.
* July robusta coffee was up $8, or 0.5 percent, at $1,744 a tonne. (Reporting by Nigel Hunt, editing by David Evans)