Sorbitol, a polyol (sugar alcohol), is a bulk sweetener. Sorbitol is produced either from starch hydrolysates, from dextrose syrup, or from dextrose monohydrate. It is a water soluble polyhydric alcohol, having sweet taste and high stability besides properties of humectancy and plasticizing. Sorbitol is about 60 percent as sweet as sucrose with one-third fewer calories. It finds a wide range of application such as oral care, cosmetics, pharma, paints, etc. Sorbitol also combines well with other food ingredients such as sugars, gelling agents, proteins and vegetable fats. It functions well in many food products such as chewing gums, candies, frozen desserts, cookies, cakes, icings and fillings. It is used to manufacture toothpaste, tonics/liquid pharmaceutical formulations, cosmetic products like face creams and lotions, etc. It has a smooth mouthfeel with a sweet, cool and pleasant taste. It is non-cariogenic and may be useful to people with diabetes. In pharmaceutical sector it finds application in vitamin syrups, cough syrups, tablet compounding and many others.
A newly developing outlet for sorbitol is its use in producing clarifying agents for polypropylene. Clarifying agents enable polypropylene to substitute for higher cost polymers in food packaging, drinking cups and housewares. Sorbitol meant for other applications, be it food, hygiene products or pharmaceuticals, can be of the "non-crystallizing" type and is produced from starch hydrolysates.
Sorbitol is produced either from starch hydrolysates, from dextrose syrup, or from dextrose monohydrate. Sorbitol is manufactured by reaction with hydrogen gas with high pressure hydrogenation of 50% aqueous dextrose solution at 140 to 165 Deg C in 3 to 4 hours with Raney nickel catalyst, using promoters such as salts of magnesium, nickel, molybdenum, iron etc. Generally dextrose is produced in house from Starch by enzymatic process
The Indian demand is around 90000 tonnes per annum. In India, Sorbitol is produced only as 70% solution and the operating capacity is around 125900 tonnes per annum. The global demand is around 1.6 million tonnes per annum (both liquid and crystalline) with a growth rate of around 3% per annum.
• Anil Products Ltd.,Ahmedabad
• Gulshan Polyols (Gulshan Sugars & Chemicals Ltd.,) Delhi
• Maize Products,Ahmedabad
• Gujarat Ambuja Proteins Ltd. Ahmedabad
• Sukhjit Starch Chemicals, Punjab
• Kasyap Sweetners Ltd., Madhya Pradesh
• Roquette America, Inc.US
• Atanor S.A.USA
• Coyne Chemical,USA
• Habib Arkady Ltd.,Pakistan
• Mudanjiang Pharmaceutical Group Co. Ltd.China
• Pt Sumi Asih Oleochemical Industry,China
• Shanghai Haohua Chemical Co., Ltd.Shanghai,China
Sorbitol’s good taste, reduced caloric value, versatility and other advantages facilitate its use in a wide variety of products. With the increasing demand for products reduced in calories or fat, sorbitol’s use should increase as well. Considering the application potentials of sorbitol and the feasibility of exploiting the export opportunities, creation of new capacity for Sorbitol can be considered in the country.