Sugar Industry and Utilization of Its By-products in Thailand: An Overview
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Sugarcane is an important economic crop in Thailand. It is not only important for sugar production but also for energy production in Thailand. In 2017, sugarcane cultivation area in Thailand covers 1.758 million hectares. Total sugarcane yield is 94.7 million tons, and sugar production efficiency is 107.90 kg/ton of sugarcane. At present, there are 51 sugar factories in Thailand. The total sugar production potentiality is over 10 million tons/year. Main exporting countries of Thai sugars are Asian as it gains advantage in transportation cost. Furthermore, bagasse and molasses are residues from sugar production. In 2016, sugar factories in Thailand left bagasse around 30.68 million tons which were used to generate 3885.34 million kWh electricity. Molasses have been used for ethanol production, at present, around 1.93 million liters/day ethanol is produced from molasses. Most of the ethanol products from molasses are used as fuel. Even though the current Thai sugar industry is in high competitive state, it still needs development, especially for increasing efficiency of sugarcane and sugar production. To increase the efficiency, new sugarcane cultivars with high yield and high sugar content are needed for sugarcane farmers and sugar industries.
KeywordsSugarcane Sugar Bagasse Molasses Renewable energy
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