Gum Arabic is a complex mixture of polysaccharides and glycoprotein that is used primarily in the food industry as a stabilizer. It is edible and is a key ingredient in traditional lithography, used in:
- Paint production.
- Food (sweets, chocolates,….etc.)
- Soft drinks (Coca-Cola, Pepsi)
- Medical industry (Capsules shells)
- Cosmetics and various industrial applications, such as viscosity control in inks and textile industries, and more a lot where this is not the place to give the details of uses.
Sudan is still the greatest producer of gum Arabic in the world, obviously more than 70% (Wikipedia) of the grade 1 gum Arabic (Acacia Senegal –known in Sudan as Hashab) & grade 2 (Acacia Seyal-known in Sudan as Talha) comes from Sudan, which is the real best quality definitely.
COMPARISON OF GUM PRODUCING AREA (SUDAN / OTHER COUNTRIES)
|1. Uniform stands of monoculture of the right speciesin large tracks.||1. Mixed species in patches.|
|2. Well-experienced producers, tappers, collectors, cleaners and graders||2. Lack of experience in all fields.|
|3. Land tenure settles – recognized private ownership.||3. Serious land tenure problems, Gum is produced in the nomads land.|
|4. Producers are mainly settled agriculturists.||4. Producers are mostly nomads not interested in Gum development.|
|5. The stable system of Gum cultivation cycle is practiced in many areas.||5. Over – exploitation and cutting of trees through shifting cultivation is practiced.|
|6. Development of Gum Projects at all levels.||6. Lack of serious development projects.|
|7. Produces 85% – 90% of world production.||7. Produces 10% – 15% of world production|
Types and grades of Gum:
Grade 1 : Hashab (acacia Senegal): is sorted to the following grades:
- Hand Picked Selected (HPS): The most expensive grade. Cleanest, lightest color and in the form of large nodules.
- Cleaned and Siftings: The material that remains after handpicked selected and siftings are removed. Comprises whole or broken lumps varying in color from pale to dark amber.
- Cleaned: The standard grade varying from light to dark amber. Contains siftings but dust removed.
- Siftings: Fine particles remaining following sorting of the choicer grades. Contains some sand, bark and dirt.
- Dust: Very fine particles collected after the cleaning process. Contains sand and dirt.
- Red: Dark red particles
Grade 2 : Talha (acacia seyal) is sorted to the following grades:
- Talha cleaned – size (4mm and above)
- Talha sifting grade – size (0.5mm ~ 4mm)
- Talha dust grade – size (under 0.5mm)
**Also processed grade 1 (Hashab) is available in the kibbled form in practical size (0.5mm~8mm) and (8mm ~ 16mm+)