What are the sugars produced by the Starch Industry?
Sugars are carbohydrates that can be classified into monosaccharides and disaccharides.:
- The main monosaccharides that are consumed are glucose and fructose.
- Examples of disaccharides include sucrose (or table sugar composed of glucose-fructose) and maltose (glucose+glucose).
According to the EU Regulation on Food Information to Consumers, ‘sugars’ means all monosaccharides and disaccharides present in food but excludes polyols (sugar alcohols).
The starch industry produces a number of different sugars. These include:
- Glucose - a monosaccharide found naturally in many foods or linked together in long chains as starch. Glucose is also known as dextrose.
- Fructose - a monosaccharide found naturally in many foods. It is the sweetest of all naturally occurring sugars. High levels of fructose are typically found in honey, in fruits - notably tree fruits (oranges, apples, etc.), berries, and melons - and in some root vegetables (such as sweet potatoes, parsnips and onions). The starch industry manufactures fructose by enzymatic conversion of glycose syrups or dextrose.
- Glucose syrups - are liquid sweeteners made from the hydrolysis of starch. They are widely used as an ingredient in confectionery. Some may contain up to 5% fructose. They are also available in dried form.
- Glucose-Fructose syrups - are liquid sweeteners composed of glucose and fructose, with varying ratios of both sugars and fructose content ranging from 5 to 50%. If the fructose content exceeds 50%, the product is called fructose-glucose syrup.
The starch industry also produces a wide range of ingredients with sweetening properties, and which are not sugars, such as polyols Click here to find out more about Polyols.
 Sucrose, which is not produced by the starch industry, is more commonly known as “table sugar”, and is made up of glucose and fructose linked together in a 1:1 ratio.
 Further information can be found on Starch Europe’s webpage - http://www.starch.eu/extraction-and-processing/
 For more information on the sugars produced from starch please refer to http://www.starch.eu/factsheet-on-glucose-fructose-syrups-and-isoglucose/