Climate zone: Tropical – Dry – Temperate – Continental – Polar
Sugarcane or simply cane, are several species of tall perennial grasses, used for sugar production. The plant is two to six metres (six to twenty feet) tall. It has stout, jointed, fibrous stalks that are rich in sucrose, which accumulates in the stalk internodes. Sugarcane belongs to the grass family Poaceae, an economically important seed plant family that includes maize, wheat, rice, and sourghum, and many forage crops. It is native to the warm temperate to tropical regions of Southeast Asia and New Guinea.
Breaking up the sugarcane monoculture by growing other crops in rotation with sugarcane has proven to be beneficial to the environment and productivity. Some farmers also choose to grow income-generating rotation crops.
Some crops that have proved to grow well with sugarcane include: peanuts, mung beans and navy beans, soybeans, industrial hemp, pumpkins, watermelons, rockmelons, honeydew, zucchinis, potatoes, bananas, pawpaw, and tropical fruits (lychees, rambutans, mangosteens, durians).
Sugarcane is a commonly used biofuel feedstock. Since the 1970s, Brazil has been the world leader in manufacturing ethanol fuel from sugarcane. Sugarcane is often praised as a valuable biofuel because it yields approximately eight times the amount of energy invested.
The process of producing ethanol from sugarcane begins with the crushing of cane stalks to extract sugar-rich cane juice. When cane stalks pass through the extractor/expeller, cane juice is collected and delivered to a fermentation tank where the yeast fermentation reaction occurs to produce ethanol.