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Where Did Sugar Cane Originate

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Is All Sugar Made From Sugarcane

Where does sugar come from? How Sugar is made here from Cane.

White table sugar comes from either sugarcane or sugar beets and is usually sold without its plant source clearly identified. This is becausechemically speakingthe two products are identical. Refined table sugar is pure, crystallized sucrose, much in the same way that pure salt is simply sodium chloride.

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Emergence Of The Sugar Beet & Todays Sugar Industry

During the Napoleonic Wars , cane sugar was no longer available in French-controlled Europe due to the naval blockade of the British. To satisfy the French sweet tooth, the humble beet, already a source of food and fodder in Europe, came to be grown and processed for its sugar. The amount of sugar in the beets was then much lower than sugar cane, and the extraction process was costlier, but it was pretty much the only source of sugar available. Napoleon ordered the planting of thousands of acres of sugar beets, and by 1814 more than 300 factories were making sugar from beets. When Napoleons empire collapsed after Waterloo, the boycott was lifted, and the cheaper Caribbean cane sugar took back its European dominance.

Sugar production from beets remained in the twilight for several decades, until the British banned slavery in the Caribbean, causing cane sugar prices to rise substantially. By now, beets had been selected with sugar levels that were comparable to sugar cane and the cost of extraction had dropped dramatically. Now the two kinds of sugar were almost on equal footing. By 1854, 11% of the worlds sugar came from beets and by 1899 65% more sugar was extracted from sugar beets than sugar cane.

Learn more about daily life on sugar plantations in our article Life on a Colonial Sugar Plantation.

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Sugarcane History And Facts

History of the sugar and the world economy would look drastically different without the presence of sugarcane, incredible plant that drove many changes in our modern history and forged the basis of the modern cuisine. With its incredible ability to create and store sucrose in large quantities, sugarcane went from unknown wild species of Asian perennial true grasses to the worlds largest cultivated crop.

Sugarcane is a grass plant of the genus Saccharum, tribe Andropogoneae that can be found in 36 species variety. It was originally native to warm tropical regions of Asia, but after early civilizations found out about its usefulness it quickly spread. This enabled new civilizations to improve theirsugar production with crossbreeding , which only increased sugarcanes popularity.

Today, sugarcane is the world largest crop. In 2010 it was estimated that over 23.8 million hectares of sugarcanes were cultivated in over 90 countries around the world, with a worldwide harvest of 1.69 billion tonnes. The largest producer of Sugarcanes is Brazil, and behind him are India, China, Pakistan, Thailand and Mexico. Also, sugarcane represents a source for 75-80% of worldwide sugar production, with the majority of the rest being taken by sugar beet that is more suited to grow in Europe.

Early Use Of Sugarcane In India

What is Sugar Cane?

Sugarcane originated in tropical Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia. Different species likely originated in different locations with S. barberi originating in India and S. edule and S. officinarum coming from New Guinea. Originally, people chewed sugarcane raw to extract its sweetness. Indians discovered how to crystallize sugar during the Gupta dynasty, around 350 AD although literary evidence from Indian treatises such as Arthashastra in the 4th-3rd century BC indicates that refined sugar was already being produced in India.

Indian sailors, consumers of clarified butter and sugar, carried sugar by various trade routes. Travelling Buddhist monks brought sugar crystallization methods to China. During the reign of Harsha in North India, Indian envoys in Tang China taught sugarcane cultivation methods after Emperor Taizong of Tang made his interest in sugar known, and China soon established its first sugarcane cultivation in the seventh century. Chinese documents confirm at least two missions to India, initiated in 647 AD, for obtaining technology for sugar-refining. In India, the Middle East and China, sugar became a staple of cooking and desserts.

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Where Was Sugarcane First Found

8,000: Sugar is native to, and first cultivated in, New Guinea. Initially, people chew on the reeds to enjoy the sweetness. 2,000 years later, sugar cane makes its way to the Phillipines and India. Sugar is first refined in India: the first description of a sugar mill is found in an Indian text from 100 A.D.

Where Did Sugar Cane Originate Old Or New World

Sugar cane native to Southeast Asia first made its way to the New World with Christopher Columbus during his 1492 voyage to the Dominican Republic, where it grew well in the tropical environment.

Who invented sugar cane?

Sugar cane was brought to the Americas in the 15th century, arriving first in Brazil by way of Portuguese traders. The first sugar cane planted in the New World was a gift from the governor of the Canary Islands to Christopher Columbus.

Where is sugarcane grown in India?

Uttar Pradesh has the largest area almost 50 per cent of the cane area in the country, followed by Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Bihar, Haryana and Punjab. These nine are most important sugarcane producing states. Sugarcane production is also highest in U.P. followed by Maharashtra.

Who invented cane sugar?

It is widely believed that cane sugar was first used by man in Polynesia from where it spread to India. In 510 BC the Emporer Darius of Persia invaded India where he found the reed which gives honey without bees. The secret of cane sugar was kept a closely guarded secret whilst the finished product was exported.

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The University Of Sugar

Alex Testere

500-600 A.D.: Jundi Shapur, a university in Iran, becomes the meeting place for the worlds scholars . Greek, Christian, Jewish, and Persian scholars gather to create the first teaching hospital. They study texts from various cultures, and by 600 A.D. they are writing about a potent Indian medicine: sugar. They also develop better methods for processing sugar cane into crystallized sugar.

Advances In The New World

Cane juice – where sugar comes from

Sugar cane was brought to the Americas in the 15th century, arriving first in Brazil by way of Portuguese traders. The first sugar cane planted in the New World was a gift from the governor of the Canary Islands to Christopher Columbus.

In 1813, inventor Edward Charles Howard developed a more fuel-efficient method of refining sugar, which boiled the cane juice in a closed kettle heated by steam and held under partial vacuum. Called Howards vacuum pan, it revolutionized the industry.

Modernization of sugar cane cultivation began when 16 whole-stalk harvesters were successfully used to harvest cane in Louisiana in 1938. Labor shortages caused by World War II led to the need for increased mechanization and by 1946 the number of whole-stalk machines operating in Louisiana jumped to 422, harvesting 63% of the states crop.

Sugar cane is now grown in 80 countries and today three U.S. states grow sugar cane: Florida, Louisiana and Texas. Raw sugar is refined in California, Florida, Louisiana, Georgia, Maryland, Michigan and New York.

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Can You Eat A Gooey Cake

They are produced to be safe to eat but still fully liquid in the shell through a patented process, and in the U.S. are sold under the brand name Davidsons. You can also use an instant-read thermometer to check the temperature to which your cake is cooked: 160ºF/71ºC is the threshold you want to reach.

A Rise In Sugar Production

Sugar production increased in the late 15th century when explorers brought sugar cane further south. For instance, Henry the Navigator brought it from Sicily to Crete. Initially, the juice was extracted using hand-operated presses. People later began using mills drawn by animals, and eventually, the juice was pressed using water power.

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Canes That Make Sugar Without Bees

According to legend, it was Alexander the Great who first brought sugar canes or at least stories of them back to Greece after a military expedition to India. Around 300 BC, his admiral Nearchos sailed from the Persian Gulf along the Indus River, where the sugar canes grew side by side, swaying in the wind. Nearchos reached for a cane and tasted it, and exclaimed, Indian canes that make sugar without bees. The Arabs brought sugar to the western Mediterranean region. They cultivated sugar canes in southern Spain and Sicily after occupying these areas. In the Middle Ages, Venice was Europe’s main importer and exporter of sugar. Raw cane sugar was imported from India and refined in Venice before being exported to the rest of Europe.

The Barbaric History Of Sugar In America


The sugar that saturates the American diet has a barbaric history as the white gold that fueled slavery.

Domino Sugars Chalmette Refinery in Arabi, La., sits on the edge of the mighty Mississippi River, about five miles east by way of the rivers bend from the French Quarter, and less than a mile down from the Lower Ninth Ward, where Hurricane Katrina and the failed levees destroyed so many black lives. It is North Americas largest sugar refinery, making nearly two billion pounds of sugar and sugar products annually. Those ubiquitous four-pound yellow paper bags emblazoned with the company logo are produced here at a rate of 120 bags a minute, 24 hours a day, seven days a week during operating season.

The United States makes about nine million tons of sugar annually, ranking it sixth in global production. The United States sugar industry receives as much as $4 billion in annual subsidies in the form of price supports, guaranteed crop loans, tariffs and regulated imports of foreign sugar, which by some estimates is about half the price per pound of domestic sugar. Louisianas sugar-cane industry is by itself worth $3 billion, generating an estimated 16,400 jobs.

The Enslaved Pecan Pioneer

The presence of pecan pralines in every Southern gift shop from South Carolina to Texas, and our view of the nut as regional fare, masks a crucial chapter in the story of the pecan: It was an enslaved man who made the wide cultivation of this nut possible.

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Energy In The Sugar Mill

The remaining fibrous solids, called bagasse, are burned for fuel in the mill’s steam boilers. These boilers produce high-pressure steam, which is passed through a turbine to generate electrical energy . The exhaust steam from the turbine is passed through the multiple effect evaporator station and used to heat vacuum pans in the crystallization stage as well as for other heating purposes in the sugar mill.

Bagasse makes a sugar mill more than energy self-sufficient surplus bagasse goes in animal feed, in paper manufacture, or to generate electricity for sale.

Where Did Sugar Cane Come From In Europe

Sugar cane was first grown extensively in medieval Southern Europe during the period of Arab rule in Sicily beginning around the 9th century. In addition to Sicily, Al-Andalus was an important center of sugar production, beginning by the tenth century.

Where does sugar cane store its food?

Sugar cane is grown in tropical and sub-tropical parts of the world, including South Africa, Brazil, India, Mauritius and the West Indies. It is an enormous grass, growing as high as five metres and the sugar is stored in its long stalk as a source of reserve food for the plant.

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Beginnings Of Sugar Cultivation

There is no archeological record of when and where humans first began growing sugar cane as a crop, but it most likely occurred about 10,000 years ago in what is now New Guinea. The species domesticated was Saccharum robustum found in dense stands along rivers. The people in New Guinea were among the most inventive agriculturalists the world has known. They domesticated a broad range of local plant species including not only sugar cane but also taro, bananas, yam, and breadfruit.

The cultivation of sugar cane moved steadily eastward across the Pacific, spreading to the adjacent Solomon Islands, the New Hebrides, New Caledonia, and ultimately to Polynesia. Cultivation of sugar cane also moved westward into continental Asia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and then Northern India. During this advancement, S. officinarum hybridized with a local wild species called S. spontaneum to produce a hybrid, S. sinense . These hybrids were less sweet and not as robust as pure S. officinarum but were hardier and could be grown much more successfully in subtropical mainlands.

Medieval Era And Sugar

Where does Real Sugar come from?

If we ignore one short interaction between the Alexander the Great and Indian sugar in 300BC , Europe did not have access to sugar from the formation of its civilizations and countries in ancient times all up to crusades. In all that period Sugar was exclusively found only in India, China and Middle East where Muslim chemist managed to improve its manufacturing process substantially. During the age of Arab Agricultural Revolution they adopted sugar into their cuisine, making with it incredible sweet products that were revered by everyone who came in contact to them.

One of the most important contacts that they have come during crusades, when warriors from many western European countries went to the Holy Land. After the end of their campaigns, they brought to Europe very expensive sweet salt which sparked interests of many rulers and high-class citizens. This led to the slow expansion of traders toward the east, most notably, formation of few European settlements in the Middle East by Venetians. Because sugar could be made only after very labor intensive period in both growing and processing, it maintained hits high price after Venetian, Italian and Spanish traders managed to transport it back to Europe.

14th and 15th century saw the rise of the European made sugar, but because of labor intensive work, it was grown primarily by slaves in Cyprus and Kingdom of Castile , and European workers in Andalusia, Algarve and Madeira .

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How Is Sugar Made

What is sugar? If you like chemistry, you might say an organic chemical. If you enjoy baking, you might tell me that its a pantry staple. And if you know about nutrition, you would perhaps say a carbohydrate. Sugar is such a ubiquitous product that everyone knows something about it!

Sugar is the common name given to the organic compound sucrose. It can be commercially extracted from various plant sources two popular ones being the sugar cane and the sugar beet . Sugar beets were not commonly used until the middle of the 19th century, but sugar cane has been used to extract sugar for over thousands of years.

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Sugar Cultivation In The New World

The Portuguese took sugar to Brazil. By 1540, there were 800 cane sugar mills in Santa Catarina Island and there were another 2,000 on the north coast of Brazil, Demarara, and Surinam. The first sugar harvest happened in Hispaniola in 1501 and many sugar mills had been constructed in Cuba and Jamaica by the 1520s.

The approximately 3,000 small sugar mills that were built before 1550 in the New World created an unprecedented demand for cast irongears, levers, axles and other implements. Specialist trades in mold-making and iron casting developed in Europe due to the expansion of sugar production. Sugar mill construction sparked development of the technological skills needed for a nascent industrial revolution in the early 17th century.

After 1625, the Dutch transported sugarcane from South America to the Caribbean islands, where it was grown from Barbados to the Virgin Islands.

In the process of whitening sugar, the charred bones of dead enslaved people were commonly substituted for the traditionally used animal bones.

After the Haitian Revolution established the independent state of Haiti, sugar production in that country declined and Cuba replaced Saint-Domingue as the world’s largest producer.

Hacienda La Fortuna.

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Pollution From Sugarcane Processing

Particulate matter, combustion products, and volatile organic compounds are the primary pollutants emitted during the sugarcane processing. Combustion products include nitrogen oxides , carbon monoxide , CO2, and sulfur oxides . Potential emission sources include the sugar granulators, sugar conveying and packaging equipment, bulk loadout operations, boilers, granular carbon and char regeneration kilns, regenerated adsorbent transport systems, kilns and handling equipment , carbonation tanks, multi-effect evaporator stations, and vacuum boiling pans.

Source: FAOSTAT, United Nations

In 2020, global production of sugarcane was 1.87 billion tonnes, with Brazil producing 40% of the world total, India with 20%, and China producing 6% .

Worldwide, 26 million hectares were devoted to sugarcane cultivation in 2020. The average worldwide yield of sugarcane crops in 2020 was 71 tonnes per hectare, led by Peru with 123 tonnes per hectare. The theoretical possible yield for sugarcane is about 280 tonnes per hectare per year, and small experimental plots in Brazil have demonstrated yields of 236280 tonnes of cane per hectare.

From 2008 to 2016, production of standards-compliant sugarcane experienced a compound annual growth rate of about 52%, while conventional sugarcane increased at less than 1%.

In Brazil, gasoline is required to contain at least 22% bioethanol. This bioethanol is sourced from Brazil’s large sugarcane crop.

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