Sweetness from nature

Sweetness from nature

Sweetness from nature

Sugar is obtained from sugar beet in our latitudes. With its clear, pure sweetness, it is one of the most versatile ingredients in our kitchens. Sugar is also a completely natural way to ensure that your bread is fluffier, your ice cream is softer and your jam stays fresh for longer.

Sugar beet and sugar cane

Sugar beet and sugar cane

All fruits, vegetables and berries contain varying amounts of sugar. Sugar beet and sugar cane are the only plants that contain so much sugar that it is worth extracting. Globally, about 75% of all sugar is produced on the basis of sugar beet. Due to the climate, in the Nordic region we can only grow and therefore only produce sugar from sugar beet.

Sugar extracted from sugar beet and sugar cane is also called sucrose. Sucrose consists of equal parts glucose (grape sugar) and fructose (fruit sugar). Other types of sugar include lactose, which is present in milk products, and maltose which is present in starch from grains such as wheat and barley.

All sugar types are carbohydrates and have the same energy content per 100 g.

From sugar beet to sugar crystals

From sugar beet to sugar crystals

In Sweden, most of the sugar beet is grown in Skåne, which has the correct soil and the most favourable climate. The sugar beet is harvested in autumn and winter, and it is only during these months that sugar is produced. After the beets are transported to the sugar beet mill they are washed and then cut into thin sticks called cossettes, similar to French fries.

The sugar is extracted from the beet by placing the cossettes in hot water at 70 degrees C. This produces a raw juice, which is purified and then concentrated into a thick juice or syrup containing about 70 percent sugar. When the syrup is boiled, white sugar crystals are formed. The syrup is centrifuged until only the crystals themselves are left - a pure and naturally white sugar. The process of extracting sugar from sugar beet takes about 12 hours, and each sugar beet yields about 30 sugar cubes.

Learn what the sugar terms mean in our Sweetener glossary

Learn more about the different stages of sugar production in the film below.