Overview of the Guar gum and Cassia gum derivatives
Guar Gum is the substance extracted from the Guar plant’s endosperm. The gum is extracted from this legume plant that consists of a high rate of molecular carbohydrate. For obtaining the gum, manufacturers pass the guar seeds through a series of procedures. Dust and unwanted materials get separated through the procedure and then the gum splits are mixed with a certain quantity of water for hydration. Finally they are dried up to form the guar gum powder. The by-products of the guar husks are used for feeding the cattle. Guar meal comprises high protein for individuals. Cassia gum powder is also manufactured from a wild weed, both commercially and wild. It grows best in the wet, hot, tropical climate. India and Pakistan are the lead producers of Guar and Cassia Gum derivatives for its suitable agro-climatic conditions. However, nowadays it is also successfully grown in Sudan, Brazil, USA and South Africa.
The extracted gum from the guar plant serves as a great thickener, emulsifier and stabilizer in cosmetics and food industries and creates great opportunities globally for cultivators of the Guar gum producing nations. Not only the food industry, the traditional and industrial usages and opportunities are described below:
Bakery products- Improves the structure, crumb, moisture retention and texture of the product and also helps to increase the shelf life and dough yield
Medicinal purposes- Guar plant leaves serves excellent to cure the night blindness; boiled guar seed can be used as poultice for small pox, enlarged livers, plague, broken bones and head swellings
Human consumption- the green ripe pods can be cooked like the French beans; immature pods can be either fried into chips or can be salted to preserve for future use
Soil and crop improvement- guar can be commonly used as a green manure and cover crop
Drilling oil wells- guar gum help in increasing the production of natural gas and oil and are also used as surfactant, defoamer and synthetic polymer
Cassia acts as a stimulant, carminative and tonic. The volatile 1-2% of cassia oil of the cassia seeds creates the taste and spicy aroma. The industrial usage of the cassia tora powder is explained below:
Pet food- used as a thickening agent for the wet canned food for pets
Air fresheners- used in the making of air freshener gel
Other application- used in manufacturing gel
Challenges faced by the Guar and Cassia gum producing countries
Several challenges are often faced by the cultivators of the guar and cassia gum countries like India and Pakistan. The productivity is of low quality as farmers hardly uses any inputs and cultivates on marginal quality soil. Quality seeds are also not available. The specifications for buying the gum are often subjective with the size, colour and shape. Most often, the farmers are not even aware of the varieties that suit their area. Value-addition for this industry is poor as a major percentage of the export is made in the form of refined splits.
With the wide range of application and usage of the guar gum, cassia seeds, cassia gum powder, cassia tora powder across the world, the farmers should be given proper training on the use of inputs like pesticides, weedicides and quality seeds to ensure higher quality production. Also, efforts in the development of machinery and equipments should be made to process guar and test the quality of the finished product. With these efforts the guar gum producing countries are sure to offer the importers their quality products at a reasonable price.
This article has been written by Biren Patel working at Agro Gums. Agro Gums is a guar and cassia gum manufacturing company offering high quality guar gum powder, fast hydration guar gum powder, cassia powder, guar splits and guar meal to satisfy the production requirements of various industries across the world.