Revista industrial y agrícola de Tucumán
On-line version ISSN 1851-3018
ZOSSI, B. Silvia; CARDENAS, Gerónimo J.; SOROL, Natalia and SASTRE, Marcos. Effect of sugar and non sugar compounds on sugar cane industrial quality in Tucumán (Argentina). Rev. ind. agric. Tucumán [online]. 2011, vol.88, n.1, pp. 13-21. ISSN 1851-3018.
Since 1997 in Tucumán, Argentina, between 65% and 85% of cane for sugar production has been harvested mechanically, either green or burnt. The rest is harvested in a semi-mechanical way, mostly by burning cane, cutting it manually and using a loading device. Cane is burnt before or after harvest to remove leaves attached to stems, thereby minimizing the presence of non-sugars during industrial processing. Due to legislative actions since 2005, green cane harvesting has been gradually implemented. This harvesting practice ultimately led to a significant increase in non-sugar content in processed cane. This paper studies the influence of the main sugar and non-sugar components on juice composition that affect the manufacturing process, especially focusing on those compounds promoting colour. The study was conducted on cane from the four most widely used commercial varieties in the province: TUCCP 77-42, LCP 85-384, CP 65-357 and RA 87-3. Cane samples derived from three different harvesting practices: topped stalks without leaves, burnt cane without leaves and tops, and green harvested cane with approximately 15% of trash (leaves and tops). Results showed that regardless of the type of harvest, LCP 85-384 yielded the highest sugar levels because of its highest sucrose content and lowest levels of fibre and non sugar compounds. In the four varieties studied juice extraction and total recoverable sugar decreased, while non sugar compounds, mainly starch and ash, increased when green cane harvested was processed.
Keywords : Sugarcane varieties; Sugarcane juice composition; White direct sugar; Green cane; Burnt cane.