Chic African Culture Africa Factbook

Egypt has the World’s Largest Sugar Silo

Egypt's Canal Sugar has the world’s largest Sugar Silo used for housing processed sugar beets and sugar cane. 

Sugar comes from sugar beets and sugar cane plants. Egypt produces around 2.5 million tones of sugar annually with the Canal Sugar Company alone producing 900,000 tons annually with the largest sugar silo in the world with a storage capacity of about 417,000 tons.

A sugar silo is a structure for housing bulk products from the manufacturing of sugar beets and sugar cane. The Canal Sugar has the world’s largest Sugar Silo with a diameter of 406 feet, a depth of 213 feet, and a height of 131 feet which is about 3/4 times as wide as The Washington Monument and ¼ feet as tall. The enormous concrete Canal Sugar Company Sugar Silo looks exactly like a dome sugar canister but much larger.

Around 77 percent of sugarcane is cultivated in Upper Egypt, this crop is considered a traditional crop cultivated since 1952. 

Doughnuts made from sugar beets
Doughnuts made from sugar beets 

Main production areas for sugarcane are Menya, Sohag, Qena, and Aswan where sugarcane processing plants are located. Sugarcane is not only the main source for sugar locally and globally, but it also provides many essential industries with raw materials.

Egypt's Canal Sugar is a large-scale sugar beet farming and processing project in the vast area of desert land in Egypt's Minya Governorate. The project is being developed by the UAE-based Al Ghurair Group, one of the largest diversified conglomerates in the Middle East.

The Canal Sugar project involves the development of a 181,000-acre site that will include sugar beet fields, a sugar processing factory, a power plant, and other related facilities.

Egypt's Minya Governorate is located in the middle of the country, and it is one of the largest governorates in terms of land area. It has a population of around 5 million people and is known for its historical and archaeological sites, including the ancient city of Amarna and the Beni Hassan necropolis.

The governorate is also an important agricultural area, with a variety of crops grown in the region, including cotton, wheat, maize, and vegetables. The area has significant water resources, with the Nile River flowing through the governorate and providing irrigation for much of the agriculture.

In recent years, there has been a growing focus on developing the agricultural sector in Minya, with the aim of increasing productivity and improving the livelihoods of local farmers. 

The Canal Sugar project, which aims to transform desert land in the governorate into a major sugar production hub, is one example of this effort to boost the region's agriculture sector.

Despite its potential for economic development, Minya Governorate also faces a number of challenges, including poverty, unemployment, and a lack of basic infrastructure and services in some areas. 

These issues are being addressed through a range of government and private sector initiatives aimed at promoting inclusive and sustainable development in the region.

Canal Sugar Company is a sugar beet factory with the worlds largest sugar silo.

Sugar beets are a type of root vegetable that are grown for their high sugar content. They are a variety of the common beet known as Beta vulgaris, but are specifically cultivated to have a higher concentration of sucrose, which can be extracted and refined into sugar.

They are typically planted in the spring and harvested in the fall, when the roots are at their peak sugar content. The beets are then transported to processing facilities where they are washed, sliced, and subjected to a series of steps to extract and purify the sugar.

Sugar beets are usually grown in temperate regions with cool summers and mild winters. Sugar beets are an important crop in many countries, particularly in Europe, where they are widely grown for sugar production. 

In Egypt, there are 16 sugar processors, eight processing sugarcane and seven processing sugar beets. 

Upper Egypt enjoys an optimum sugar growing environment with many hours of sun, high light intensity, and significant differences in day and night temperatures.

Canal Sugar Company is located in Nasr City, a district of Cairo, Egypt. Cairo is the capital of Egypt, the third largest city in Africa and the largest city in the Arab world. 

Sugar is one of the world’s oldest documented products from around 8,000 BCE.

Cookies made from Canal Sugar Company sugar
Cookies made from Canal Sugar Company sugar

Egypt’s Canal Sugar sugar beet factory produces 900,000 tons a year of white sugar and started production in 2021. 

The Canal Sugar has the world’s largest Sugar Silo with a diameter of 124 meters, a depth of 65 meters, and a height of 40 meters and is majority owned by the United Arab Emirates  businessman Jamal al-Ghurair. 

The world’s largest Sugar Silo went into production May 2022 total investments of the project are estimated at about one billion US dollars. 

Sugar beets and sugar cane plants contain between 14 to 16 percent sucrose. Sugar is naturally white. When the sugar is initially extracted from the plants, it has a golden color because of the non-sugar materials attached to and within the sugar crystals. 

This golden sugar is then purified, where these plant fibers and molasses are removed, extracting the sugar molecules from the non-sugar materials and restoring the sugar crystals to their natural white color.

Sugar is one of the world’s oldest documented commodities
Sugar is one of the world’s oldest documented commodities

Sugarcane and sugar beets are the key crops for the Egyptian sugar industry with beet pulp and molasses as important by-products throughout Egypt. 

Moreover, sugarcane is the most efficient tropical plant in receiving and storing solar energy and converting it into sugar. 

Upper Egypt enjoys an ideal sugar growing environment with many hours of sun, high light intensity, and significant differences in day and night temperatures.

Sugarcane remains the dominant crop for sugar production in Egypt, with the majority of the sugar factories located in the Nile Delta and Upper Egypt regions.

Did you know what a governorate was?

A governorate, also known as a province or region in some countries, is a territorial administrative division that is used in many countries around the world. 

It is typically a subnational level of government, below the national or federal level, and is responsible for administering a specific geographic area within a country.

The exact responsibilities and powers of a governorate can vary depending on the country and its political system, but in general, a governorate is responsible for managing local services and infrastructure, such as education, healthcare, transportation, public safety, and land use planning. 

The governorate may also be responsible for collecting taxes and other fees, and for managing budgets and resources.

Governorates are often further divided into smaller administrative units, such as districts, municipalities, or communes, which may have their own local government structures and responsibilities. 

The specific names and boundaries of these units can vary depending on the country and its political system.

Examples of countries that use governorates as a subnational administrative division include Egypt, Tunisia, Jordan, and Iraq. Other countries may use different terms, such as states, provinces, or regions, to refer to similar administrative units.

African sugar beets
African sugar beets

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