INDUSTRY PROFILE #17
Peter K. Carrell
VOLUNTEERS IN TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE
Wilson Boulevard, Suite 500, Arlington, Virginia 22209 USA
Telephone: (703) 276-1800,
Fax: (703) 243-1865
Telex: 440192 VITAUI,
Glucose from Cassava Starch
[C] 1990, Volunteers in Technical Assistance
This Industry Profile is one of a series briefly describing
small or medium-sized industries. The
Profiles provide basic information for starting
manufacturing plants in developing nations.
Specifically, they provide general plant descriptions,
financial, and technical factors for their
operation, and sources of information and expertise.
The series is intended to be useful in
determining whether the industries described warrant further
inquiry either to rule out or to
decide upon investment.
The underlying assumption of these Profiles is that the individual
making use of them already has some knowledge and experience
in industrial development.
Dollar values are listed only for machinery and equipment
costs, and are primarily based on
equipment in the United States.
The price does not include shipping costs or import-export taxes,
which must be considered and will vary greatly from country
to country. No other investment
costs are included (such as land value, building rental,
labor, etc.) as those prices also vary.
These items are mentioned to provide the investor with a
general checklist of considerations for
setting up a business.
These profiles should not be substituted for feasibility
studies. Before an investment is made
a plant, a feasibility study should be conducted.
This may require skilled economic and
The following illustrates the range of questions to which answers must
What is the extent of the present demand for
the product, and how is it now being
Will the estimated price and quality of the
product make it competitive?
What is the marketing and distribution plan
and to whom will the product be
How will the plant be financed?
Has a realistic time schedule for
construction, equipment, delivery, obtaining
and supplies, training of personnel, and the start-up time for the plant
How are needed materials and supplies to be
procured and machinery and
to be maintained and repaired?
Are trained personnel available?
Do adequate transportation, storage, power,
communication, fuel, water, and
What management controls for design,
production, quality control, and other
have been included?
Will the industry complement or interfere
with development plans for the area?
What social, cultural, environmental, and
technological considerations must be
regarding manufacture and use of this product?
Fully documented information responding to these and many
other questions should be
determined before proceeding with implementation of an
Equipment Suppliers, Engineering Companies
The services of professional engineers are desirable in the
design of industrial plants even though
the proposed plant may be small.
A correct design is one that provides the greatest economy in
the investment of funds and establishes the basis of
operation that will be most profitable in the
beginning and will also be capable of expansion without
Professional engineers who specialize in industrial design
can be found be referring to the
published cards in various engineering magazines.
They may also be reached through their
Manufacturers of industrial equipment employ engineers
familiar with the design and installation
of their specialized products.
These manufacturers are usually willing to give prospective
customers the benefit of technical advice by those engineers
in determining the suitability of their
equipment in any proposed project.
Volunteers in Technical Assistance (VITA) is a private,
non-profit, volunteer organization
engaged in international development.
Through its varied activities and services,
self-sufficiency by promoting increased economic
productivity. Supported by a volunteer
of over 5,000 experts in a wide variety of fields, VITA is
able to provide high quality technical
information to requesters.
This information is increasingly conveyed through low-cost advanced
communication technologies, including terrestrial packet
radio and low-earth-orbiting satellite.
VITA also implements both long- and short-term projects to
promote enterprise development and
GLUCOSE FROM CASSAVA STARCH
Prepared By: Peter
Reviewed By: Robert
The product is clear, colorless, glucose syrup, extracted
dried cassava starch or cassava chips.
It is sold in drums or
Glucose, also called dextrose, was first manufactured in
early in the 19th century as a sweetener to replace sucrose
(table sugar) which had become scarce in wartime.
The variety of
its uses has since grown enormously.
Today, glucose is valued in
almost all industrial countries for its unique
candies (sweets) and preserves it provides "body"
and flow characteristics) and controls crystallization.
canning, it provides body to the syrup without too much
A small plant can operate 250 days a year on a three-shift
basis and produce about 2,500 tons of glucose syrup.
degree of conversion of the starch to glucose depends on
needs. The plant supplies
a small market and can be expanded, if
market conditions allow, to take advantage of economies of
The plant should be accessible by good roads and should be
good supply of cooking water.
Access to a municipal sewer system
is also recommended.
Disposal of spent carbon and fiber tailings
from the starch screen are the major solid-waste
environmental issues concern disposal of effluent from
housekeeping water and gases from the boiler flue and the
However, the wastes pose very little health hazard when
added to the environment.
The process is relatively simple and its principles are
market demand is stable at levels depending on
local economic development.
Profitability depends on market factors, which, in turn, are
heavily influenced by the agricultural and trade policies of
costs are not usually a major factor.
Manufacturing Equipment Flexibility
The same equipment can be used to produce a crude, solid
dextrose ("cast sugar") by acquiring aluminum pans
in which the
evaporator product is allowed to crystallize.
this product is suitable as a reducing agent for
cast sugar requires more acid to be added to the convertor
and slowing the rate of starch breakdown.
A chemist experienced in the food industry, particularly
to sweets, preserves, and canning, is needed to explain the
of this product to potential customers.
A chemical engineer is
needed to perform or supervise analytical process control as
as oversee mechanical operations.
It is strongly recommended that
a professional engineer with experience in the production of
glucose from starch be retained, at least when the plant is
the planning stage.
The product meets established standards.
Syrup has a reducing-sugar
content equivalent to 30% to 40% glucose by dry weight
equivalent [DE]" = 30 to 40), and contains 80% to 82%
dissolved materials by weight.
Cast sugar requires a DE of 90.
Quality is assured by having the right laboratory
the plant personnel to use them correctly.
For the small plant,
amounts of chemicals are measured by volume or weight.
production, bags or barrels of some materials may be
Acidity of the convertor supply is checked by
addition and product dry substance are monitored
product is neutralized by adding sodium carbonate solution
the end-point is checked with a pH meter.
The needed amount of
activated carbon is weighed according to the volume of the
The concentration of dry substance is measured with a
tube density controller.
Batch quality testing involves determining
reducing sugars (DE) by copper reduction, dry substance by
refractometry, color by spectrophotometry, and taste,
and odor by direct inspection.
Constraints and Limitations
Cassava is most likely to be grown only in moderate or
motor transport is limited to about 400 km.
If long-distance rail transport lowers the temperature to 5
degrees C or less, the tank car may need to be reheated to
unloading; this, in turn, can lead to unacceptable color
Glucose syrup in used for hard candies and preserves, and
making medicinal syrups, canning syrups, and table
syrups. It can
be used in manufacturing table syrups to adjust their viscosity
There are now better products for supplemental
addition to milk for infant feeding, but glucose syrup
The raw material is dried cassava flour or chips.
grown in Africa, Central and South America (especially
India, and Indonesia, mostly for use as a boiled vegetable.
Malaysia has a cassava-processing plant.
all common in trade, are hydrochloric acid, powdered
carbon, and sodium carbonate (soda ash).
Sales Channels and Methods
Sales are by direct contact with those manufacturers who are
Some of then may already use syrups prepared
from other sources.
Good technical service is required to adapt
the users' present formulation to the new product.
Once a use
pattern has been established, brokers may help to sell the
in drum lots. Sales
to individuals are promoted by mass
advertising and the usual channels for food specialties.
Geographic Extent of Market
The plant should be located where cassava is grown or is
available at low cost.
If the water content of the cassava chips
significantly increases their shipping weight, it is best
the plant be located near the source of the raw material.
product is stable and is readily transported in bulk, as
in drums and bottles.
High bulk-transport costs can limit the
size of the market area, The 400-km limit on motor transport
also control the size of the market area.
Glucose syrup is well known, and competitive syrups are
are manufactured from various materials in such
tropical and semitropical countries as Australia, Brazil,
Guatemala, Kenya, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Pakistan,
and Venezuela. In
most of these, maize is the raw material.
Some broken rice is processed in Pakistan.
Some wheat is used in
Australia and New Zealand.
As a guideline, consider that U.S. annual usage of glucose
amounts to 9 kg per capita, of which 60% replaces sucrose in
canning of foods. At
half this per-capita consumption, the plant
described here would supply a population of 1/2 to 1 million
PRODUCTION AND PLANT REQUIREMENTS
1500 sq m
400 sq m
electric boiler) 600 kg/h
stream) 1400 cu m/d
water 14 cu m
evaporated heater and: 6 cu
Major Equipment & Machinery
Materials & Supplies
acid 8 tons
Drums, 20 and
Explanation of Diagram
Workflow begins with receipt of dried cassava starch or
chips, if chips, a mill and dust collector
should be added. The
raw material is dumped into the slurry tanks with water to make a slurry of
30 percent dry substance.
It is screened to remove the fibers and then pumped to a convertor
lank. The chemical
breakdown of starch to sugar takes place in the presence of weak acid.
breakdown has proceeded to the desired stage, the acid is
neutralized with soda ash (sodium carbonate).
Impurities are then removed with activated charcoal in
filter presses and the product is concentrated by
evaporation as diagrammed.
The tanks and pipes are made of stainless steel and other
materials in standard use for food processing.
Filter presses can be made of wood or polypropylene.
Unless otherwise stated, these addresses are in the United
Technical Manuals & Textbooks
Grace, M. R. (ed.), Cassava Processing, rev. ed.
and protection papers, No.
3. Rome (Italy):
Food and Agriculture
Organization of the United Nations, 1977.
Anhydro Division of APV Crepaco, Inc., 120 John S. Pietsch
Square, Attleboro Falls, Massachusetts 02763.
Chemineer, Inc., P.O. Box 1123, Dayton, Ohio 45401.
Dedert Corp., 20000 Governors Drive, Olympia Fields,
60461. Falling film
Illinois Water Treatment Co., 4669 Shepherd Trail, Rockford,
Illinois 61105. Ion
exchange, chromatographic enrichment.
Mitsubishi Chemical Industries, Ltd., 5-2 Marunouchi
Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100; P.0 Box 245, Tokyo Central,
exchange, chromatographic enrichment.
Mixing Equipment Co., Inc., 138 Mt. Read Blvd., Rochester,
Sparkler Filters, Inc., Box 19, Conroe, Texas 77305.
filters, leaf filters.
U.S. Filters Corporation, 12442 E. Putman St., Whittier,
90602. Rotating leaf
Financing and Engineering Companies
A.E. Staley Manufacturing Co., 2200 East Eldorado St.
Cargill, Inc., P.O. Box 9300, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55440
CPC International, Inc., International Plaza, P.O. Box 8000,
Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey 07632.
(This company has the widest
Intensa, S.A., Rio Panuco 82, Col. Cuauhtemoc, Mexico, D.F.,
Karl Kro/yer Genbrog, A/S, Dronningens Tvaergade 16, DK-1302
Copenhagen K, Denmark.
Mitsubishi Chemical Industries, Ltd., 5-2 Marunouchi
Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100; P.0 Box 245, Tokyo Central, Japan.
Suomen Sokari Oy (Finnish Sugar Company), Kyllikenportti 2,
SF-00240 Helsinki, Finland.
VITA has a number of documents on file dealing with industrial
processes. VITA also
provides a variety of services to help set
up processing plants, including locating used equipment,
etc. Fees depend on