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A cooperative sugar group, Tereos processes agricultural raw materials into sugar, alcohol and starch.

18 December 2018
10 things you didn’t know about starch!

What are starch products? Starch products come from processing corn, wheat, potatoes and cassava. Here are the 10 things to remember!


1. Tereos has no shortage of starch specialists! Tereos Starch & Sweeteners is Tereos’ cereals division and has more than 2,000 employees spread out over three continents: Europe (TSSE), South America (TSSB) and Asia (TSSI/Wilmar). The business has a total of nine production sites in Europe, two in China and one in Brazil.


2. Naturally occurring in most plants, starch is formed through the process of photosynthesis. It is mainly extracted from corn, wheat and potatoes, but it is also found in many other plants such as rice, barley, peas, cassava, and even bananas.


3. Starch is not only used in food products. It is essential in the production of paper and cardboard, and prevents the ink from running. Starch is also used in cosmetics, medicines and detergents, as well as some building materials and adhesives.


4. Starch can be extracted from tubers or roots (potatoes, sweet potatoes, cassava, etc.). Once it is extracted from the raw material, it is used as an ingredient or in the form of other derived products (animal feed, cardboard, paper, etc.).


5. Potato tubers are the stars of the starch world, having the highest starch ratio. On average, a potato is made up of 75% starch, 2% protein and 1% fat. Potato starch is mainly used in the paper and cardboard industry. However, it is also used in food, especially potato chips!


6. Starch is made up of two molecules composed of glucose: amylose and amylopectin. Wheat starch is 75% amylopectin and 25% amylose. It is most often used to produce glucose syrups.


7. Starch is also extracted from corn. Corn starch accounts for 48% of France’s starch production. On average, corn is made up of 72% starch, 10% protein and 5% fat.


8. Protein pea starch is a texturizing agent. It helps to set and give a thickened consistency to food. It is used in sauces or creams, for example.


9. China is the world’s largest consumer of starch. To meet the demands of this growing market, we have two sites in Asia, in partnership with the Wilmar Group: the Dongguan plant in the south of China and the Tieling starch facility in the north.


10. Starch is renewable and biodegradable. For example, bioplastic bags can be produced from starch.


Find out more

Interview: A solid group
Building stable and lasting relationships
Contributing to safe, healthy and sustainable food
The origins of a French cooperative group