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Centre urges sugar mills to use only C-heavy molasses for ethanol production

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2023
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The Government of India has urged sugar mills to use only C-heavy molasses (CHM) for ethanol production to encourage more sugar production. The government has further stipulated that sugar mills having dual feedstock units should adhere to one feedstock at a time.

The Food Ministry stated that the changeover from one feedstock to another shall be allowed only after a minimum of 20 days of operation on a particular feedstock and at least one week advance notice shall be given to the state excise or other concerned officials for changeover of feedstock.

The Ministry has issued revised guidelines for ethanol and spirit production during the 2023-24 sugar season (October-September) after banning the production of rectified spirit (RS)/extra neutral alcohol (ENA) from sugarcane juice and B-heavy molasses (BHM).

In case, both the processing lines are operational at a time with different feedstocks, the receiver, storage and denaturation/issue tanks shall be separate unit-wise, having no interconnectivity. The ethanol produced through different routes is to be certified by the concerned state excise department or any authority as designated by the Central/state government to clearly indicate the type of grain used.

The guidelines also prescribed that the quality of the ethanol produced by any of the routes should conform to the desired specifications as per IS 15464 (2022). Ethanol is produced from different feedstocks such as CHM, BHM, sugarcane juice/sugar syrup/sugar, surplus rice of FCI, and damaged foodgrains such as broken rice and maize.

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