FAQ - Juice quality

FAQ - Juice Quality

  1. What should be the criteria for the best quality of sugarcane juice?

  • Should have accumulated peak sucrose content in juice.
  • Should have low level of non sugars
  • Should have high purity
  • Should have optimum fibre content
  • Should have negligible amount of unwanted materials (trash, binding materials, dead and dry canes, mud particles, water shoots, etc.)
  • Should have higher quantity of juice
  • There should not be pith in the cane

  1. What are the factors that affect the quality of the juice?

Factors like variety, nutrient management practices, stage of maturity, soil condition, growing condition, time and method of harvesting, and time of transport to mill,incidence of pests and diseases etc. have profound influence on the accumulation of sucrose and other non-sugars in cane juice. Among the major nutrients, nitrogen plays a great role in not only increasing the yield but also in influencing juice-quality. Excess application or late application of nitrogen (usually beyond 90-120 days) depress the juice sucrose content and increase the non-sugar component of juice leading to poor recoveries. High tissue nitrogen leads to continued negative growth and thus delays maturity. It produces late tillers and water shoots. It increases sheath moisture and soluble nitrogen content in the juice. Thus low sucrose, high reducing sugar contents and lower purities are common under excess nitrogen. This also leads to higher molasses. Nitrogen application of about 250-300 kg N ha-1 are optimum under the tropical conditions.

  1. How does the soil type and quality of irrigation water affect the quality of sugarcane?

The quantity and quality of irrigation water also influences the juice quality to a large extent. Cane grown under saline and alkaline conditions tends to accumulate large proportion of chlorides and sodium in addition to increased mineral content. Sugarcane grown under river water irrigation produces juice of better quality as compared to sugarcane grown under well water. Reduction in sheath moisture by increasing interval of irrigation at maturity phase is reported to be conducive for increased sucrose content in juice.

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  1. What is the composition of cane juice?

The constituents of the normal cane juice fall within the following limits:
Water: 75 to 88%
Sucrose: 10 to 21%
Reducing sugars: 0.3 to 3%
Organic matter other than sugar: 0.5 to 1%
Inorganic compounds:0.2 to 0.6%
Nitrogenous bodies:0.5 to 1%

  1. How to prepare bottled sugarcane juice?

  • For best quality of sugarcane juice, we have to choose a variety with high sugar content, light coloured and with less fibre (CoC 671, Co 62175, Co 7717, Co 86032, Co 86249 and Co 94012) and the cane should be harvested at peak matrity.
  • Add one lemon with 2 to 3 g of ginger for every 3 kg of cane material.
  • Warm the juice to 60 to 70oC and keep it at that temperature for 15 minutes.
  • Remove the impurities by filtering the juice with a muslin cloth.
  • To the clear juice add sodium metabisulphite as a preservative at a rate of 1 g per 8 L of juice.
  • Transfer to a hot water sterilized bottles, close it with a corking machine.
  • Serve chilled.
  • Bottled juice can be stored for 6 to 8 weeks.
  • Initial investment required for bottling 500 Nos. per day will be approx. Rs.10,000/- (cost of bottles, stainless steel vessels, electric heaters, hot water sterilization tank and corking machine excluding cost of crushers).


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