What is jaggery; and why is it good for you?

Jaggery is a kind of unrefined sugar. Raw, concentrated sugarcane juice is boiled until it becomes solid and can be formed into blocks. It has the slight bitterness of molasses and the richness of caramel.

Jaggery (Gur) has been cultivated in India for thousands of years. Known as s´arkarã (in Sanskrit), it was the only sugar known to the subcontinent, even reaching as far as other parts of Asia, and Africa. Ayurvedic texts dating back to over 5,000 years mention its benefits: boosting blood purification, improving digestion, and enhancing bone and pulmonary health. It was the Portuguese who discovered the ingredient in Kerala in the late 1600s. From the Malayalam cakkarã, they rechristened it xagarã, which later became jaggery.

Types of jaggery

There are four other kinds not made from sugar cane, but they are unusual. One, Nolen Gur (found in Bengal – ‘nolen’ means new and ‘gur’ is the word for jaggery), is made from date palm sap; and a second type is made from coconut sap. In Sri Lanka they make a kind of liquid jaggery, or treacle, from the sap of the kithul (aka jaggery palm) tree. In Myanmar they make jaggery out of the sap of the local toddy palm.

Where jaggery is most commonly found?

It is used commonly throughout India, Afghanistan, Iran and south-west Asia (in Hindi it’s known as Gur).

Potential health benefits

All kinds of health benefits are claimed for jaggery, from curing constipation to reducing blood pressure and everything in between; certainly, it contains useful vitamins and minerals not present in refined sugar. In Ayurvedic medicine it’s used to treat respiratory conditions. If eaten during the winter months, when the sugarcane is harvested, and it is fresh it’s claimed that eating it provides a boost to the immune system. Jaggery can be preserved into the summer but it needs to be frozen.

The darker the better – The first important thing to note is that the darker it is the richer and deeper the flavor.



Chemical composition of jaggery:

Minerals present in jaggery:

Table:1 Content given per 100 g of jaggery

Vitamin present in jaggery:

Table:2 Content given per 100 g of jaggery


Best crushing practices

Traditional method of crushing:

There is initial state of manufacturing of jaggery is extraction of sugarcane juice by crushing. In traditional method two kind of crushing roller are used which is:

  1. Vertical crusher B) Horizontal crusher

In vertical crusher the juice recovery is about 50-55% & also the efficiency of horizontal crusher is 55-60%. These roller are driven by diesel  as well as with animal  in which single oxe  crush about 50kg per hour & 5HP diesel increase extraction rate up to 300kg per hour.

For jaggery production manufacturer because they use less technology & chemicals the cane must crushed within 24 hours other wise sugar is invert  into different sugar & not get solidified as per require. The recovery of sugarcane juice is about 50-60%, for more yield we require more efficient machines for crushing.


New machinery for sugarcane juice recovery

In India there is four roller sugarcane crusher is developed by Agricultural Engineering College & Research Institute, The working of machine the four roller is provided in place of three as used in traditional crusher. By shaft & gear wheel system the power is transmitted to the roller and we are able to extract the juice.

Silent feature of this machine is that it is four roller horizontal type crusher up to 70% available juice is extracted which is additional 8-10% more than traditional crusher.

Juice filtration

Jaggery quality depend upon the clarity of juice it also help in storage of juice for long time. The latest economical & effective developed filter is available in RS & JRS Kolhapur  is two stage filtration system fabricated from SS (304 grade) by this filter we easily remove adulterants, dust particle etc.. The first stage filter is stationary & made of stainless steel 304 of 20 gauge sheet with 3 mm round hole strainer & has  29 holes/sq. inch. Second stage filter is rotary filter with .5 mm screen size & covered over inclined cylinder . The rotary cylinder screen revolved around its longitudinal axis& separates out the juice impurities at lower end with the help of spirals provided inside it. The clean juice is collected in the tray placed below cylinder. 

Cubical jaggery

The concentrated jaggery is put into the moulding frame & dry them than remove from frame. Cubical Jaggery is an unrefined healthy sweetener produced using concentrated sugar cane juice. It is high fiber and mineral content. It is a respiratory track cleaner. Jaggery has the ability to cleanse the body and act as a digestive agent.


Conclusion – Jaggery in different forms, as manufactured and explained above, comprises of many useful minerals, vitamins and antioxidants stated earlier in this manuscript, can be taken as health supplement, which would help improving the majority population suffering due to under nutrition, and/or malnutrition, because of deficient common diet and probably, may replace sugar in making of health foods, and hence, appears to have bright future among masses and could be promoted.








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