Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Lowering the color of crystals in sugar factories

Date:
June 25, 2011
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Like diamonds, sugar crystals ideally are very pure and low in color. Now studies have provided a better understanding of the source of undesirable color in factory sugar.

ARS chemist Gillian Eggleston has calculated that the U.S. sugarcane industry could save more than $100 million per year if leaves, tops and muddy soil that piggyback on sugarcane from the field could be removed before it comes into the factory.
Credit: Peggy Greb

Like diamonds, sugar crystals ideally are very pure and low in color. Now studies led by U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) chemist Gillian Eggleston have provided a better understanding of the source of undesirable color in factory sugar.

Related Articles


Eggleston works in the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Commodity Utilization Research Unit in New Orleans, La. She conducted the studies with Barbara Muir of the Sugar Milling Research Institute in Durban, South Africa. ARS is USDA's chief intramural scientific research agency.

Environmental concerns have led to a shift away from burning cane in open fields to remove "trash," which is impurities such as leaves, tops and muddy soil that piggyback on sugarcane from the field into the factory. More trash comes into the factory on green cane than on burnt cane.

Traditionally, several processes have been used in factories or refineries to lower or remove color, but they are all expensive. The authors estimate that for every 1 percent increase in trash levels, there is an increase of about 50 international color units for raw sugar and 25 such units for refinery sugar. They also found that for every 1 percent increase in trash, there is about a one-fifth-percent drop in recoverable crystals. That translates into upwards of a $100 million loss per year to the U.S. sugarcane industry.

Based on samples produced across a pilot plant that simulated all factory processes, green cane detrimentally affected purity, sugars, ash and color as well as physical properties such as clarification performance, according to Eggleston. The data show that undesirable color in factory sugar is actually coming from the green leaves and the growing-point region which occurs at the top part of the stalk.

Eggleston's collaborative work has led to a recommendation to sugarcane growers and processors that even a small reduction -- such as less than 10 percent -- in total trash levels processed at the factory could be more efficient and cost-effective than other factory color-removal processes. This award-winning study was published in the Proceedings of the South African Sugar Technologists' Association.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Lowering the color of crystals in sugar factories." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110623130747.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2011, June 25). Lowering the color of crystals in sugar factories. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110623130747.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Lowering the color of crystals in sugar factories." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110623130747.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) Millions of monarch butterflies begin to descend onto Mexico as part of their annual migration south. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Newsy (Dec. 19, 2014) A new study suggests a certain type of bird was able to sense a tornado outbreak that moved through the U.S. a day before it hit. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins