Refined sugar is made from raw sugar that has undergone a refining process to remove the molasses. Raw sugar is sucrose which is extracted from sugarcane or sugar beet. While raw sugar can be consumed, the refining process removes unwanted tastes and results in refined sugar or white sugar. Refined sugar is widely used for industrial needs for higher quality. Refined sugar is purer (ICUMSA below 300) than raw sugar (ICUMSA over 1,500). The level of purity associated with the colors of sugar, expressed by standard number ICUMSA (International Commission for Uniform Methods of sugar Analysis), the smaller ICUMSA numbers indicate that higher purity of sugar.
Types of Sugar
ICUMSA 45 White Sparking Sugar
White Sugar is refined sugar processed from the natural sugars which can be found in sugar beet or sugar cane. The industry name for the sparkling white sugar which is often know to consumers as ‘Table Sugar’ is ICUMSA 45.
ICUMSA 600-1200 VHP Raw Sugar
VHP sugar was invented in 1993 by Brazilian sugar scientists, and is now the most popular raw sugar export in the world. This is because buyers get more sugar per shipment when they purchase VHP, due to the fact that it has such a high sucrose content. It is also easier and quicker to refine than other sugars, and the bulk of ICUMSA 45 refined sparkling white sugar is made from VHP raw sugar for this reason.
Brazilian sugar is perhaps the most well known type of sugar in the world. As the biggest sugar exporter on the planet, Brazil produces around thirty million tons of sugar every year, and exports two thirds of that to various countries.
Global demand for sugar has continued to increase over the years, with population growth and the growing popularity of the Western style diet accounting for much of this growth. Production has also increased in many countries, and India in particular is now a solid rival to Brazil in the production stakes, though its exports are significantly lower than Brazil’s.
The great majority of Brazil’s sugar exports are in the form of VHP raw sugar, a raw sugar product that has undergone some processing to increase its polarity.
Sugar is bought and sold by investors and price speculators as a tradable commodity using Sugar futures contracts. These “futures” are traded on the London International Financial Futures and Options Exchange (LIFFE).
VHP – Sugar is bought and sold by investors and price speculators as a tradable commodity using Sugar futures contracts.These “futures” are traded on the New York Board of Trade (NYBOT).