View Full Version : Bone Char / EU Regulations

Mr Flibble
Oct 26th, 2007, 11:31 AM
I noticed in Cumin's reply from Toffuti something I've seen in a reply from a Polish Absinthe maker - that they don't use sugar filtered with bone char because it is against EU regulation to sell products within it that have.

It would great if this were the case, as it would mean that the bone char thing cannot apply at all for sugar in the EU. However, besides these 2 references I can't find any evidence of it being so.

If it isn't so, but some companies/people replying to queries for them believe it is and assume the sugar they buy has not been filtered with bone char then knowing whether it is law or not would still be useful - to know whether they're talking rubbish or not.


Oct 31st, 2007, 01:11 AM
Sadly, it would appear not.

Bone char, which is used to process sugar, is made from the bones of cattle from Afghanistan, Argentina, India, and Pakistan. The bones are sold to traders in Scotland, Egypt, and Brazil who then sell them back to the U.S. sugar industry. The European Union and the USDA heavily regulate the use of bone char. Only countries that are deemed BSE-free can sell the bones of their cattle for this process. Bone char—often referred to as natural carbon—is widely used by the sugar industry as a decolorizing filter, which allows the sugar cane to achieve its desirable white color. Other types of filters involve granular carbon or an ion-exchange system rather than bone char.


It's possible that isn't up to date though.