The history of golden syrup
From humble beginnings to a global iconView blog post
Golden syrup is one of the world’s best-loved sugar products. First formulated in 1883 by Ragus’ founder, Charles Eastick, it is the oldest branded food product in the world.
Golden syrup performs the same function as other invert syrups but with added flavour and colour, giving products a caramelised taste and distinctive amber appearance. It can also withstand higher baking temperatures and has humectant properties, with these preventing crystallisation and extending a product’s shelf life.
As a result, golden syrup is primarily used in the baking industry, particularly in the production of biscuits, cakes, tarts, cookies, flapjacks and pastries. It can be the base ingredient, such as with a treacle tart, but it can also be used to support other ingredients.
As golden syrup is an invert sugar, it is also used when producing ice cream, both to add flavour and depress the freezing point, limiting crystallisation. In addition, golden syrup is also poured over ice cream as a topping. Its distinct caramel flavour means it is also us a condiment for fruit and porridge.
Golden syrup has a distinctive naturally caramelised mellow flavour and very sweet taste, due to a sweetness value approximately 20% greater than straight sucrose (white sugar). Its unique flavour profile is instantly recognisable all over the world.
Crystallisation (12 months); microbiology (12 months)
Bulk tankers, intermediate bulk tankers (IBCs) and 25kg pails
|Description||Approx. (on sample)|
|Invert sugar||42– 50%|
|Refractometer brix||82.0 – 82.3|
|pH||4.8 – 5.8|
First, sucrose is heated in an inversion pan with water at 70°. At this stage, 64% of the total sugar required for golden syrup is used, with the solution needing a pH below 1.6 to form a syrup. This is achieved through the inversion of sucrose into glucose and fructose molecules.
The syrup is then polarised to -14 to achieve the desired ratio of sucrose: glucose, before being neutralised with a natural alkaline agent that brings its pH value above 6.0 After, it is further heated in the pan for a set time to caramelise the sugars, resulting in the desired amber colour and treacle flavour.
The remaining 36% of sugar needed for the final product is then added to the inversion pan to produce a partial invert. Once dissolved, the density of the sucrose in the solution is a maximum of 83% and the polarisation is +20.
Next, an alkaline is added to the pan to bind all the non-sugar particles, which are then filtered out through a plate-and-filter press to maximise its purity. Following this, the syrup is stored in maturation tanks.
Finally, the golden syrup must pass through an 80-micron filter before it is packed to customers’ requirements, ready for delivery across the globe.
All our sugar syrup production adopts BRC standard procedures including HACCP and undergoes a process of temperature/time, filtration, and final stage 80-micron filter prior to packing.