Updates with market activity, comments and closing prices
NEW YORK/LONDON, Sept 22 (Reuters) - Raw sugar futures on ICE closed up on Thursday, with the front-month October contract gaining 1.5%, as widespread rains over the Brazilian sugar belt led many mills to stop harvest operations.
* October raw sugar SBc1 settled up 0.27 cent, or 1.5%, at 18.49 cents per lb, having hit a seven-week low of 17.50 cents on Monday.
* Dealers said widespread rains all over Brazil's center-south region have led most mills to stop harvesting for now.
* "This will slow the crush and impact the ATR (sugar content in the cane)," said a broker.
* The rains, despite impacting near-term production, might help extend the crop and also improve the outlook for next year, which reinforced the inverted market situation where deferred contracts are trading at a discount to the spot position.
* Consultancy Job Economia raised its projections for Brazil.
* December white sugar LSUc1 rose $15.30, or 2.9%, to $536.90 a tonne.
* December arabica coffee KCc2 settled up 2.25 cents, or 1.0%, at $2.2355 per lb.
* Rabobank said good level of rainfall is expected in top producer Brazil over the next two weeks. It also expects the return of normal rainfall overall in Brazil, which should aid the flowering of the 2023/24 crop and pressure prices.
* November robusta coffee LRCc2 rose $12, or 0.5%, at $2,238 a tonne.
* Coffee trading remained subdued in Vietnam this week due to a lack of beans, with traders awaiting the new crop season that starts next month, while supplies begun to dwindle in Indonesia at the end of harvest there.
* December New York cocoa CCc1 settled down $31, or 1.3%, to $2,321 a tonne.
* Sovereign debt default is "a real possibility" for Ghana, the world's number 2 cocoa producer, and any kind of domestic debt restructuring could severely threaten the local banking sector, a senior director from the ratings agency Fitch said.
* Brazil's chocolate production rose 11% in the first half, industry group Abicap said.
* December London cocoa LCCc1 fell 20 pounds, or 1.1%, to 1,861 pounds per tonne.
(Reporting by Marcelo Teixeira and Maytaal Angel; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)
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