New Delhi: The Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food, and Public Distribution has released new regulations addressing the manufacturing of ethanol from sugar and grain-based feedstocks in an effort to make the validation process for distilleries simpler.
According to the new guidelines announced on Friday, sugar factories and ethanol units must obtain a process validation report from a technical institute, such as the National Sugar Institute (NSI), Kanpur, the Vasantdada Sugar Institute (VSI), Pune, or any other technical institute designated by the state government, during the sugar season/ethanol year 2022–23. If no such validation was performed before, then such validations will be necessary for the following years.
Additionally, within a fortnight after doing the on-site validation, the validating agencies must transmit a copy of the validation report to the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Department of Food & Public Distribution, and Directorate of Sugar & Vegetable Oils. They must also detail the reduction in sugar recovery caused by the shift toward ethanol.
Both ethanol distilleries using sugar or molasses and those using grains are covered by the published criteria.
“The ethanol produced through different routes is to be certified by the concerned state excise department or any authority as designated by State Government with unique serial no. for proper identification. Such certificate for grains shall clearly indicate the type of grain used i.e. Maize or corn, damaged food grains or surplus rice sourced from the FCI (Food Corporation of India ),” the guidelines read. The quality of the ethanol produced by any of the routes should conform to the desired specifications as per Bureau of Indian Standard, it added.
According to the food ministry, these rules will let distilleries determine the amount of ethanol produced from various sources, such as B-heavy, C-heavy, cane syrup, and various grain-based ethanol.