Front Cover
 Title Page
 Front Matter
 Sugar - a basic food
 Sugar in industry
 Back Cover

Title: Sugar
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00054974/00001
 Material Information
Title: Sugar an illustrated story of the production and processing of a natural food and a useful chemical
Physical Description: 34 p. : ill. (some col.) ; 31 cm.
Language: English
Creator: International Sugar Research Foundation
Publisher: Sugar Research Foundation
Place of Publication: New York N.Y
Publication Date: c1948
Subject: Sugar -- Manufacture and refining   ( lcsh )
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Statement of Responsibility: Sugar Research Foundation.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00054974
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 10802255

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Title Page
        Title Page
    Front Matter
        Front Matter
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Sugar - a basic food
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
    Sugar in industry
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
    Back Cover
        Page 30
        Page 31
Full Text



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Sugar Research Foune tion

C .u I---L __ ip~L1C--Ui_ .. iL*r_. --lr- ` Y~-C`

i B


An Illustrated Story of the
Production and Processing
of a Natural Food
and Useful Chemical


6 '4. 6 7 2

"... it is justifiable, therefore, to refer to sugar
as the foundation of life, the substance upon
which, in the last analysis, our existence and
the development of modern civilization rests."

unlight on a green leaf!... A common thing, to be sure, but on so common a thing
our lives depend. Without it we should have no food, no clothing, no fuel to warm
, our homes, to power our automobiles, to drive our industries. And no oxygen
to breathe.
Man is completely dependent upon plants because only green leaves can trap and
store the energy of the sun. In them by a process of photosynthesis the carbon dioxide
of the air is combined with water to form sugar, a primary food. Some of the sugar is
used in the growth of the plant. Part of it is converted by the plants into proteins,
starches, oils and other food elements. The color and fragrance of a flower, the wood
with which we build, even such drugs as quinine and digitalis were at one time sugar.
Our fuels, coal and oil, laid down in remote ages were likewise derived from sugar in
the leaf. Life-supporting oxygen released by plants is a by-product of this process of
building with light.
Two plants-the sugar beet and the sugar cane-store sugar more abundantly than
any others and, for that reason, have become man's primary source of this important
natural food.










FooD is always man's first concern. Here in the West-
ern Hemisphere, so richly endowed with fertile lands
and favorable climate, food is available in greater abun-
dance and in greater variety than in any other place on
the globe. Yet the mere availability of food is not
enough, for good health depends on the consumption of
the proper food in the proper proportions. Carbohy-
drates, fats, proteins, minerals, vitamins-all these are
essential to a balanced diet. Fortunately, we are abun-
dantly blessed with sources for all of these, and great
strides are being made in the education of the people to
combine them wisely.
Sugar-the common sugar which appears at every
meal-is a pure carbohydrate. Its function is to supply
energy to the body in the form of calories, and it per-
forms that function efficiently, agreeably, and econom-
ically. It is pleasant to the taste, clean, uniform in
quality, easily assimilated, contains no waste, requires
no cooking, and keeps almost indefinitely.
To the chemist the sugar of commerce is known as
sucrose, represented by the formula C12H2201n. This is
exactly the same sugar found in ripe oranges, bananas,
and other fruits and, as a matter of fact, it constitutes
eighty per cent or more of the nutrition value of most
fruits. Commercial production of sugar is designed to
extract this food from sugar bearing plants, exactly as
made by nature, without changing in any way its
structure or composition.
Recent research indicates that the body assimilates
more than half the material it needs for efficient mainte-
nance in the form of sugars, and that common sugar
is assimilated more quickly than any other food. In care-
fully controlled studies of groups of children it has been
shown that when abundant calories are supplied to
an adequate diet, the subjects grow more rapidly, show
more resistance to fatigue, and have sounder teeth than
the control group which receives the same balanced
diet without wholly adequate calories.
Scientists are disproving many superstitions that have
long surrounded sugar. A generation ago all sweets
were taboo on training tables. Today, athletes are
given a diet rich in sugar, for such feeding has been
shown to be entirely compatible, and even helpful to

vigorous exercise. Fallacies which hold that sugar is
primarily responsible for diabetes and tooth decay have
been upset by findings which show that these diseases
are of very complex origin. Research is gradually investi-
gating all of the factors concerned in their cause and
Sugar cane and sugar beets are grown in sixty coun-
tries the world over. In a normal year the total con-
sumption of sugar is approximately 35,000,000 tons,
and of that amount the United State uses-7QO,,000,0
tons. Our supplies come from a variety of sources-
from production within the continental United States,
from Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and Cuba, and other Carib-
bean Islands. Cuba is the largest single source of sup-
ply. Prior to World -War 'IF fe Phfiippine Istalffds'were-'
important producers of sugar, but the industry there
was largely destroyed during the Japanese occupation.
In the Continental United States, cane sugar is pro-
duced in Louisiana and Florida, and beet sugar in nine-
teen states from the Great Lakes to California. Canada,
too, has a thriving beet industry, and refines raw cane
sugar imported from the British West Indies, Cuba and
Cane sugar refineries, which convert raw sugar into
sparkling white crystals, are located in Massachusetts,
New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland,
Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, California, and in Canada at
Halifax, Montreal and Vancouver.
The steps by which sugar is obtained from the sugar
cane and sugar beet differ in some respects but the
principal operations are similar. Briefly they are: to
extract the sugar-containing juice fromthe plant, to
remove impurities in the juic to concentrate it by-
boiling until crystals form/o separate the crystals from
syrup and, finally o wash the crystal. The sugar
obtained is a water-white crystalline solid, 99.9 per
cent sucrose.
The refining of beet sugar is customarily carried out
in one continuous operation. In the cane sugar industry
it is general practice to produce raw sugar at mills
located in the areas of cane production, and to transport
the raw sugar to refineries nearer to major consuming
markets. In some instances, however, cane sugar is.
refined in the areas of production.

C UGAR cane is a tall perennia
3 grass. Its stalk is divided 2
sections by joints, and each -'
contains a bud or "eye" which
sprout when planted. Sections c
the stalk are carefully selected r
planting and dropped !e
into furrows...
The actual seed of the cane
formed in a tassel, and it is used
moist exclusively in developing
and improved varieties. Pla -t
cists are constantly trying to L
strains of cane which are z
to specific climatic conditions,
resist plant diseases, and yi V!
Spr percentage of sugar.

C ANE is a thirsty plant and irrigation i practiced in areas
in which average rain-fall is insu fcient to produce
successful crops. But water for irrigation is not always near
at hand and it sometimes becomes necessary to pump it
through huge pipes over mountains and through valleys to
the cane fields. Not only has irrigation tended to stabilize
agricultural conditions, but the cane indu try's requirements
for roads and public services of all kinds as made significant
contributions to economic welfare.

O^ Iilp -

T HE sugar beet stores sugar in
its long, tapering, silvery-white
root. An average beet weighs about
two pounds and contains 14 tea-
spoons of sugar.
The beet matures in six to nine
months, and thus is adapted to those
climates in which crops must be pro-
duced between the last frosts of
spring and the onset of the following
winter. At harvest time the beet is
lifted from the ground and the leafy
top is cut off. Beet tops are excellent
feed for cattle.
As in the case of sugar cane, scien-
tists are engaged in breeding new I
strains of beets which will yield
more sugar and be adaptable to
varying conditions of climate and
soil, and resistant to plant diseases.
The sugar beet, because of its
extensive root system is a "deep
feeder", contributing to fertility by
breaking-up the soil.
T HE sugar beet is grown in virtually all countries in
the temperate zone. It, too, needs adequate supplies
of water and yields are ordinarily greater in regions where
irrigation is possible. In its growing season a beet may take
up as much as 15 gallons of water and give it off through
,- the leaves. At harvest time, the root of the beet is 75 to
jff 80 percent water, the foliage 90 percent.

". -j 6 T HE production of sugar plants,
both cane and beets, is under-
going a technological revolution in
Which hand-labor is gradually giving
way to machines. In planting, cul-
tivating, harvesting, and loading,
newly-devised equipment is per-
forming tasks which for generations
have been done entirely by hand.
Mechanization of agricultural prac-
tices in sugar production, as in other
crops, is difficult because the nature
of the plant, as well as its growth
habits, pose stubbornproblems.
The mnacheLe, a long, heavy knife,
...- 1is a traditional symbol tFite sugar
harvest. With it the worker cuts the
-" cane stalk close to the ground, lops
off the upper portion which contains
little sugar, and then strips the leaves
from the stalk. The stalks are cut
into convenient lengths if necessary
for transportation to the raw sugar
mills. An experienced workman can
cut from two to four tons of cane a
_day, depending on te variety of t~e
cane and the "stand".
Sugar cane has a hard, waxy,
outer skin which ranges in color
from pale yellow to purple. As the
plant matures the sugar -content in-
creases, and at harvest time the
sugar may account for 10 to 17 per
cent of the total weight of the cane.
Like other perennial plants, the
roots of the cane send up new shoots
after the stalks have been cut off.
These succeeding crops are known
as "~atQo crops."

IN favorable climates cane grows
prodigiously. Ooe week after .l
planting the first shoots appear above
the ground, and maturing stands ap-
pear to be a solid wall of vegetation.
Some varieties grow erect, reaching -
a high of 15 feet or more. Others
stretch along the ground for half their
length, then shoot upward, a charac-
teristic that makes mechanical har-
vesting difficult.
Mechanical harvesters are most
efficient on relatively level land which
has been well-cleared before planting.

SUGAR cane is a bulky crop, and
the mechanical equipment nec-
essary to handle it must be rather
massive. All problems of mechanical
harvesting have not been solved,
but in the past few years certain
operations have been accomplished
One type of harvester draws the
cane into giant jaws as it advances,
and circular knives cut off the cane
at both top and bottom. A gale-
force current of air, produced by an
airplane propeller, blows out leaves
and trash while the heavier cane is
lifted on a conveyor and dropped
into an accompanying truck. Other
simpler harvesters, pulled by trac-
tors, break off the stalks near the
roots and pile them for later handling.
They may never supplant hand-har-
vesting of cane grown on hillsides,
or in fields which have many stumps
and boulders.

B ECAUSE the sugar beet mature
in about six months it takes
normal place in crop rotation. Th
beet is a cultivated crop-that is, i
receives tillage during the growing
season-and is often rotated witl
S. small grains, grasses, and legumi
nous crops.
A large part of sugar beet produce
tion in the United States takes place
in the West, in areas far remove(
from centers of population. Suga
beets, like sugar cane, are a bulk)
crop and it is not economical to shi;
them great distances to market. Bee
sugar factories located in the area
of production reduce the bulky cror
to a concentrated food-sugar. Th<
pulp which remains after sugar ha5
been extracted f rom the beets is fed
to farm animals and marketed in the
form of meat.



c a '?- ,1y
T HE production of sugar beets .
was once a predominantly hand-
labor operation, but steady progress .
is being made in supplying mechani-
cal aids to the farmer.
The beet farmer has two periods
of peak activity. The first occurs in l
the spring when the tender sugar
beet plants must be thinned so that
those which remain have "elbow
room" for proper development. Un- .
til recent years thinning was done by
workers who went along the rows
hacking out blocks of beets with a
short-handled hoe, leaving a single
beet at regular intervals. Now, with
the development of special types of
seeds, precision-planting drills, and
mechanical thinners, the labor re-
quirements of spring work have
been greatly reduced. Various types
of thinners do a reasonably good job
under favorable field conditions.

ThHE beet farmer's second labor
peak occurs, in most areas, in
the autumn. A variety of machines
in increasing numbers are taking
ever the job of harvesting, topping,
_nd loading beets. Some of these ma-
chines top the beet while it is still in
the ground, and then lift the root.
Others lift the root and cut off the
icp in a later operation. While the
hai testing machines have not" yet
reached a state of perfection, on the
-vho!e their performance is reason-
ably satisfactory.
Harvesting machines can com-
-pete the harvest more quickly than
~laf workers and require only
about one-third the manpower. It is
expected that with gradual mechani-
zation within the next decade me-
chanical devices will harvest all but
a fraction of the crop.



W HEN the harvest begins, beet
sugar factories hum with ac-
tivity. Because the crop is normally
harvested faster than the factories
can process the beets, huge storage
piles of beets are built up in the fac
tory yard and at outlying receiving
stations. Operations in the factory
are carried on around the clock
seven days a week.
The beets are carried into the
factory in flumes of rapidly moving
water, or on conveyor belts. After
they have been thoroughly washed
to remove adhering soil, they are
weighed and elevated to slicing ma-
chines which cut them into strips
about the size and shape of "shoe-
string" potatoes. The sliced beets
are plunged into diffusion tanks and
treated with hot water, which soaks
the sugar from them.


N some regions it is common prac-
tice to set fire to standing carte
just before harvesting begins. The
flame destroys the long narrow
leaves, which contain insignificant
amounts of sugar, and any trash
which may have been collected in
the fields. The cane itself, having a
high moisture content, remains rela-
tively undamaged. However, when
this practice is followed it is neces-.
sary to cut and process the cane im-
mediately to prevent deterioration
of sugar juices.
Giant cranes and heavy-duty
trucks have superseded the more
primitive methods of collecting har-
vested cane where the construction
*of all-weather roads is possible. Ex-
tensive rail systems with hundreds
of miles of temporary track that tap
outlying areas of production have
been a routine part of the sugar cane
industry in many parts of the world.




ICTURESQUE ox-carts, which
for centuries have drawn har-
vested cane from the fields to mills
or railroad sidings, are also being
replaced by faster and more efficient
mechanized equipment. The unro-
mantic tractors and trucks are com-
ing into wide usage not only because
they can do more work in less time,
but also because they can travel on
roads impassable to oxen.
At weighing station power-oper-
ated slings remove an entire cart
load of cane and deposit it in rail-
road cars for transportation to the
raw sugar mill.
In many areas of the world, sugar
production is the most important
single industrial or agricultural ac-
tivity, and the livelihood of millions
of people depends directly or indi-
rectly upon it. Where sugar produc-
tion is the economic mainstay of a
nation or area, every factor influenc-
ing the industry is understandably a
matter of concern to the community.

BEET sugar is produced in more
than 80 factories in the United
States, from the Great Lakes' States
to the Pacific, and Canada has six
plants in operation. An ordinary fac-
tory has capacity to slice 2,000 tons
of beets a day, but the larger units
may slice as many as 6,000 tons.
After thorough washing, beets
pass through an intricate arrange-
ment of knives. The slices or cos-
settes that result from the process
are carried into large diffusion tanks
where hot water soaks the sugar
from them.



H ARVESTED cane iust- be
i moved to the raw sugar mill
as quickly as possible to prevent the
deterioration of the sugar juices.
Work in field and factory is there-
fore synchronized, and harvesting
proceeds at a rate which will permit
Sthe mill to operate at capacity but
not to accumulate excess supplies-
of cane.
SSugar cane is a heavy and bulky
crop, and massive equipment is
needed to handle it. Often, when
harvesting is done mechanically, bits
of soil and stories are picked up with
the cane. These must be removed
before the cane is crushed, and vari-
ous types of washers have been de-
veloped for the purpose. The cane
then moves under rotating knives,-
which cut the long pieces into short-
er lengths.

p'uANE is crushed in a series of
y grooved rollers, which exert
hundreds of tons of pressure. The
juice runs into tanks, and the cane
fiber becomes drier and drier as it
rcoves from one set of crushers to
the next. When the mass of material
~C.hes the final set of rollers it is
sprayed with hot water to remove
,ie. last bit of sugar. The fiber,
known as bagasse, which finally
emerges is so dry that it can be taken
. -,~,..ely to the furnace room to
be used as fuel.
The thin juice recovered from the
i'-=' constitutes about 80 per
cent of the weight of the cane but it
has only 10 to 15 per cent sugar.
The, juice is neutralized with lime
and then' heated. Precipitated im-
purities are separated in clarifiers.
These. residual muds are subse-
,-.-ntly discarded or used for fer-

C4, 6'c

HE juice is then concentrated
in multiple effect evaporators
under vacuum to form a heavy
syrup. This syrup is further concen-
trated in vacuum pans where the
sugar is crystallized. The resulting
mixture of crystals and molasses,
known as massecuile, flows to crys-
tallizers where, upon cooling, addi-
tional sugar crystallizes on grains
already formed.
From the crystallizers the mixture
is poured into rapidly spinning wire-
mesh baskets, called centrifugals.
The motion throws off most of the
syrup, leaving crystals behind.
Raw sugar, as it empties from the
centrifugal baskets, is light-brown in
color because some molasses still
clings to the crystals. Sugar, the pure
compound, is water-white, and fur-
ther treatment of the raw sugar is
necessary to bring it to that state.
Once the juice has been extracted
from the cane and beet the principal
operations of refining do not differ
greatly. In both cases the juice is

RAW cane sugar, an important
article of commerce the world
over, reaches the United States
mainland from the off-shore areas
of production in greater quantities
than any other dry cargo. It is cus-
tomarily packed in jute bags, but
where mills are suitably located and
port facilities exist, it is sometimes
shipped in bulk. Bulk shipping elimi-
nates jute bags, reduces substan-
tially the labor required to load and
unload cargoes.
Because so much of our sugar
comes from outside the borders of
the continental United States and
Canada, most cane sugar refineries,
which convert raw sugar into the
familiar white crystals, are located
at seaports.
Sugar prices are based on 960 raw
sugar-that is, raw sugar which con-
tains 96 percent of sugar and 4 per-
cent of moisture and non-sugars.

SrHE BAGS of raw sugar are slit
open as they enter the refinery,
and the sugar is carried to crushers
which break up any lumps that may
have formed in shipment or ware-
hodsing. From the crushers, the
sugar is conveyed to minglers, where
it is treated with syrup and con-
verted into a semi-liquid substance
called magma. From the mixer the
magma flows by gravity into a bat- '
tery of centrifugal machines, where
it is washed to remove the thin film
of molasses which surrounds each
crystal of the raw sugar.

T HE washed crystals leaving the centrifugal machines are dissolved in
warm water. Now begins a process of purification to remove from the
syrup all non-sugars and impurities. The syrup is chemically treated and
is forced through pressure filters which contain circular screen plates
covered with heavy cotton fabric or some other filtering medium, to remove
non-sugars brought out of solution by the chemical treatment. The liquid
leaving these filters is clear and of a high degree of purity, but it still has
a slight brownish color which must be removed.

SAW sugar mills, beet sugar mills,
I and cane sugar refineries-all
are essentially laboratories on a vast
scale. Each step of the process is
constantly checked, and hundreds
of tests are taken each day to pro-
duce that final purity which makes
sugar a standard ingredient of hun-
dreds of food products, and an in-
dispensable and flavorful product in
the kitchen and on the table. Maxi-
mum recovery of sugar depends on
skilled controls, and most of the
"unit processes" of chemical engi-
neering are to be found in a sugar

T HE liquid sugar from the pressure fll ers in cane sugar
refineries flows down through grantlar bone-char in
huge enclosed tanks. The bone-char absorbs the remaining
impurities from the liquid which is then brilliant and prac-
tically colorless. The bone-char gradually loses its absorp-
tive capacity and the liquids coming from the char filters are
no longer colorless. These liquids flow tO a liquor gallery
where they are segregated according to color and purity. The
darker colored liquids are returned for fu rher filtration over
the bone-char. When the bone-char no longer can absorb
impurities from the liquid sugars, it is revi fled by first wash-
ing and then heating to high temperatureS in a reduced at-
mosphere. The boneblack is then used over again in the fil-
tration process.

FOLLOWING filtration, the colorless liquid sugar is
first concentrated in multiple effect evaporators and
then flows to vacuum pans where crystallization takes
place. The liquid is boiled under vacuum at temperatures
as low as 1500 Fahrenheit in order to avoid caramelization
or burning of the sugar. As water is continuously evapor-
ated from the liquid and crystals form and grow, more
liquid sugar is fed into the pan until the pan is full. Crystal-
lizing the sugar in these pans requires considerable skill by
the sugar boiler because it is important that the sugar con-
sist of true crystals of desired size at the time the pan is full.

proper size. Crystals can be made large or small by vary-
T HE sugar boiler watches the boiling sugar through a
A ii T] heavy glass window in the vacuum pan. When crys-
W talks begin to form in the liquor, he extracts samples from
Al time to time. Placing them on a glass slide, he examines
the crystals to determine when they have reached the
proper size. Crystals can be made large'or small by vary-
ing the length of the boiling.

THE vacuum pans empty into a
mixer, which agitates the mass
of crystals and syrup until it is ready
to be received by the centrifugal-
machine. The centrifuge consists of
a perforated metal basket, spinning
at a high rate of speed. In it the
syrup clinging to the crystals is
thrown off through the perforations,
and the crystals clinging to the sides
are washed in a spray of water while
the basket is still in motion. When
the last trace of syrup has been re-
moved the machine is stopped, leav-
ing only sparkling crystals in the
basket. So strong is the force exerted
by the centrifuge that the sugar in it
is only slightly moist.

W HEN the valve at the bottom
Vof the centrifuge is opened, a
flood of perfectly white sugar pours
out. A mechanical discharger re-
moves all of the sugar from the ma-
chine and the contents empty into a
storage bin beneath. The final dry-
ing, removing about one percent of
water, now takes place. Sugar is
dried in large revolving cylindrical
drums of metal. On the inner sur-
face of each drum is a series of fins
which toss and tumble the sugar as
the drums slant downward from the
end at which the sugar is intro-
duced, so that it gradually travels to
the lower end of the cylinder as it
dries. A strong blast of pre-heated
air is kept circulating through the
drum to absorb moisture. When the
sugar reaches the storage bins only
an infinitesimal amount of moisture
is present.

T HE process is now complete ex-
cept for passing the crystals
over a series of inclined screens. The
first screen allows all crystals to pass
except lumps that may have formed.
Only coarse granulated is retained
in the next screen. Standard granu-
lated is caught by the following
screen and drawn off. Extra fine
granulated is obtained from the suc-
ceeding screen, leaving certain still
finer particles which are remelted .
for further processing.

SCUGAR is packaged in dozens of
Different ways to suit the con-
venience of those who use it. Clean-
liness is always the first considera-
tion; for it is of utmost importance
that sugar reaches the consumer in
the highest possible state of purity.
Sugar liquors are produced by
treating various types of dissolved
sugars and syrups with activated
carbons or filtering over bone-char
followed by mechanical filtration.
SInvert sugar liquors are made by
subjecting finished concentrated
sugar syrups to acid inversion which
by the addition of water changes the
sugar into equal portions of the sim-
pler sugars, levulose and dextrose.
This invert syrup is then partially
neutralized and cooled. Various
grades of sugar liquors are produced
to meet specifications as to color,
density, and sugar and invert sugar
content. These products are shipped
in drums, tank cars, and tank trucks.

SAKING cubes or tablets re-
quires other steps. In one
process now used, a special sugar is
boiled in the vacuum pan. The re-
sulting mixture of sugar and syrup
is then poured while still hot into
cylindrical molds divided into rec-
tangular compartments where it is
allowed to cool and stand. Addi-
tional sugar is crystallized from the
syrup and serves to bind the original
crystals together. The molds are
then treated with pure sugar syrup
which is then removed by spinning
the molds in centrifugal machines.
The molds are broken down and
slabs of sugar are dried, inspected,
and sawed in strips. Machines clip
these strips into tablets, dots, lumps
and cubes.
In another process, granulated r
sugar as discharged from centrifugal
machines is mixed with a small *,
amount of pure sugar syrup. This
sugar is forced into individual pock-
ets of a revolving drum to form
tablets.or cubes. As the drum turns,
plungers push the tablet of damp
sugar out of the pocket on to a tray.

THE many, and often intricate,
steps in the production of sugar
do not in any way change the prod-
uct as it is formed in plants. They
are merely phases of technically-
controlled processes to separate
sugar from non-sugars, and obtain
the pure organic compound sucrose.
Refining is carried to the point
where this white crystalline sub-
stance is 99.9% pure. This product
-sucrose-can be obtained from the
sap of the maple tree, sorghum,
dates, or any other plant.
The uniform degree of purity and
the unvarying quality of sugar ac-
count for the fact that it is a standard
ingredient in all household recipes
and in formulas for food prod-
ucts made on a large scale. Sugar
alone has the desired sweetness
ratio, solubility, and texture that
make it a universal supplement to
other foods.




V ARIOUS typ s of sugar are produced to meet the needs of housewives and
industrial conSumers of sugar. Among them are: Coarse, medium, regular, and
fine granulated, ma manufacturers' granulated, bar, powdered, confectioners', bakers',
yellow and brown sugars, tablets and cubes, and syrups of different concentrations.
All white sugar is 9.9 pure sucrose.





SUGAR is produced in greater quantities than any
other pure organic compound. It is, of course, pri-
marily a food, but an increasingly important role for
sugar as a raw material of industry is indicated by
recent research and scientific study.
In the food industries, baking accounts for the great-
est use of sugar. Large amounts are also used in canning
and preserving, in the curing of meats, and in making
ice cream, confectionery and carbonated beverages. It
is equally necessary for making flavoring extracts,
syrups and miscellaneous products such as pickles and
preserves, relishes, breakfast cereals, chewing gum, and
salad dressings.
In the non-food industries, sugar is used in scores of
curious and unsuspected ways-in hair tonics and shoe
polishes, in adhesives, photographic materials and ex-
plosives, in tanning leather and silvering mirrors. Sugar
and its derivatives are pharmaceutical necessities and
enter into the compounding of prescriptions and for-
mulas to the extent of sixty million pounds a year.
What explains sugar's wide range of usefulness in
non-food products? The basic explanation lies in its
physical and chemical properties. Sugar is a combina-
tion of two simpler sugars-D-glucose, which is some-
times called dextrose, and D-fructose, known also as
levulose. By breaking down the molecule, rearranging
its atoms, and combining it with other materials scien-
tists are bit by bit shaping a new future for sugar and
sugar derivatives. More than ten thousand of these
derivatives have been listed, and more than half of
them can be made directly, or through intermediate
steps, from the ordinary sugar of commerce. Since sugar
is a combination of two simple sugars, it is a promising
source of these products as well as of some of the 350
other substances classified as sugars.
Sugar and sugar products now make their most im-
pressive contributions to industry through fermentation
processes. Enzymes, the mysterious activators produced
by yeasts, bacteria or molds, convert sugar into chemi-
cals which industry requires in huge volume. The oldest
and most familiar transformation occurs when theeen-
zymes found in yeast convert sugar into alcohol. In
this process thousands of tons of molasses are used
each year for the production of ethyl alcohol, industry's
most versatile solvent, and the basic raw material in
the production of synthetic rubber. During World War
II, when imports of rubber were cut off, it was the
sugar in molasses that kept our army rolling.
The manufacture of industrial alcohol, however, is
not the only important process resulting from the fer-
mentation of sugar, for other significant industrial out-

lets lie within that field. A notable example is the
manufacture of acetone and butanol from molasses,
products which have basic usefulness in the making of
plastics. Other fermentations yield citric, lactic, and
gluconic acids. Citric and lactic acids are widely used
in the food field, and all three enter into the preparation
of medicines.
In addition to the fermentation processes, some direct
chemical conversions are used. Mineral acids reacting
with sugar produce levulinic acid, and by chemical
changes sugar makes histidine, an essential amino acid,
and histamine, a substance used in medicine. Sugar
unites with allyl chloride to form allyl sucrose, a prom-
ising resinous coating material. The action of oxygen
upon invert sugar in the presence of alkalies yields salts
of arabonic acid, an intermediate in the synthesis of
ribose, which in turn enters into the synthesis of ribo-
flavin (vitamin B2).
Interaction of sugar with acetic anhydride produces
a remarkable change in properties. The product, sucrose
octaacetate, is insoluble in water and intensely bitter in
taste. It is used as a stomachic in minute quantities and
serves as a denaturing agent for alcohol, as well as a
Even in their natural state, sugar and sugar products
have some rather unusual industrial uses. In foundries,
as an example, sugar products are used in the compo-
sition of binders and molds. Welding rods are some-
times coated with a mixture containing sugar. Mixed
with soil, sugar is said to prevent the damping-off dis-
ease of conifer seedlings in nurseries. It is also believed
to hasten decomposition of nitrates in the soil and thus
guard plants in dry regions against damage from excess
The world has only four great sources of organic
raw material: coal, petroleum, animals, and plants.
Scientific studies of coal gave us the "coal-tar" age.
Similar research in petroleum has yielded innumerable
products of great value. The study of animal products
is also going forward and promises to enrich our knowl-
edge and civilization. But plants supply us with our
greatest bulk of raw material, and more than three-
quarters of the dry weight of all the plant material on
the earth is carbohydrate. Sugar, cellulose, and starch
are the "Big Three" among carbohydrates.
Coal and petroleum supplies must eventually dwin-
dle, but in carbohydrates we have a perpetual source
of raw material as long as seeds germinate. It seems
inevitable, therefore, that over a long period industry
will tend to increase the utilization of carbohydrates,
and that suga? will be increasingly important in the
"carbohydrate age."


SOOD processing industries ac-
count for the consumption of mil-
lions of tons of sugar each year.
j Indeed, there are few prepared foods
that do not require the addition of
sugar at some stage in their process-
ing. But sweetening power and nu-
'. -tritional value are not the only prop-
erties of sugar that have made it so
widely used.

The baking industry uses enor-
_mous quantities of sugar because it
serves a fourfold function. Part of
the sugar is converted to carbon
dioxide which leavens baked prod-
ucts. Sugar imparts flavor and gives
the crust of bread its golden color.
J .i It also serves to keep the baked
Goods fresh and moist.

. Sugar's preservative action brings
to our tables all year round the
goodness of fruits, vegetables, and
meats processed at the peak of their

In confectionery, sugar gives body
as well as nutritional value and
taste. In other products it frequently
is used because it gives the desired
texture of malleability.
Its solubility and power to
strengthen the flavor of other in-
gredients as well as its bulk-to-sweet-
ness ratio have made it an indis-
pensable ingredient in carbonated


T HE by-products of sugar pro-
duction have many industrial
uses. (See Chart page 18) Millions
of gallons of blackstrap molasses, a
by-product of raw sugar mills, come
into the United States each year to
be converted into industrial alcohol
or used in the preparation of cattle t -
feed. In fact, in recent years the
greater part of ethyl alcohol has
been made from molasses.

Bagasse, the cellulose fibre remain-
ing after the juice has been crushed
from the cane, is most commonly
used as fuel to power raw sugar
mills and generation of steam for
heating, evaporation and crystalli-
zation. It is also baled and used as a
raw material in making wall-board,
paper, and insulation, and it prom-
ises to be valuable in the production
of certain types of plastics.

Millions of sheep and hundreds of
thousands of cattle are fattened each
year on beet tops or beet pulp. Beet
molasses is also used in cattle feed-
ing, in the production of yeast, citric
acid and cattle feed. Current re-
search indicates that beet pulp may
be a valuable source of pectin.



U NTIL recently, sugar research :
largely unorganized. Often v;-
able information and achievement v.:
lost in the mass of uncorrelated E
Science is most fruitful when it is co---
tive-when interests, talents and
pooled and made easily available, F:
when projects are coordinated to :
With this object the producers __
processors of cane and beet sugar cQ a
lished the Sugar Research Foundation c
June 10, 1943 as a non-profit, n- "
cal corporation under the laws of -
York State. Today its work is s :-- :
by producers who supply more than
percent of all sugar marketed in I
The Foundation has three prir,-! c
jectives. The first is to sponsor rc- '
and scientific studies on the role c
in the diet. The second is to conduct !
vestigations in the field of chemistry, I-'
chemistry, microbiology, and r-i
The third is to disseminate accur f:: -
nation about sugar from all sources. /

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