Sugar: it’s the ingredient that we try to limit the most but that is often is incorporated into nearly every treat during the holiday season, regardless of your persuasion. If you choose not to use beet sugar or other natural sweet substitutes such as dates or maple syrup for baking purposes or other very specific recipes there is an alternative. This brand offers an organic, fairly traded and cruelty-free version of granulated sugar (in addition to brown and powdered) that can be used as a one-for-one replacement for refined white turbinado sugar.
Sugarcane farming abroad does not have a favorable track record. In unregulated industrial areas, sugar may be responsible for more biodiversity loss than any other crop worldwide due to habitat destruction, intensive water use, heavy use of chemicals, and polluted wastewater (1). This is also true for domestically produced sugar and its effect on the Florida Everglades (1). If you want a sweetener that is easy on the environment and supports your local economy, you can look for locally grown organic maple syrup or honey. But if it’s sugar you need, Fair Trade Certified™ (2) sugar that is organic and also produced without animal byproducts is readily available.
This brand has a strong commitment to practicing sustainable, non-GMO agriculture and their operations adhere to strict organic standards. This means that the sugar cane fields are green cut and are not burned or treated with herbicides or synthetic fertilizers. Of course, this is better for the environment. But it also creates a high-quality, great-tasting, unrefined sugar.
Importantly, unlike typical mass-produced sugars that are highly refined, no chemicals or animal by-products (i.e. bone char) are used in the production or to de-colorize this sugar. Many people may not realize that cow bones are often used in sugar production: they are ground and heated, then used to remove impurities from sugar. They may also may be used to filter the remaining color to produce a white-water syrup which is then evaporated and spun into sugar crystals. It is important to know that supermarket brands of sugar buy their sugar from several different refineries, so there is no way of knowing if the sugar is produced in a cruelty-free manner at any time. Well-known brands may have alternative means of production but it is very difficult to track which refinery these batches came from as well and where to find them.
The Fair Trade Certified logo on the brand’s products guarantees that the farming cooperatives that the brand has a relationship with are paid directly for the cane that they grow and mill. This means that farmers can compete with factory farms, cultivate the quality of their crops, and build thriving communities. It’s the recipe for sweet world: Sustainable, Fair and Cruelty-Free.
Disclaimer: Wholesome Sweetners Organic and Fair Trade Sugar is metabolized in the body in the same manner as regular sugar. Diabetics should treat this product the same as white sugar and speak to your physician about alternative, low-glycemic, natural sweeteners for your diet.
1 source: The World Wildlife Fund estimates
2 Through Fair Trade, farmers are paid a guaranteed price for their products—a price that covers their living costs while also helping to improve their communities. In addition to guaranteeing farmers a fair price, Fair Trade certification also helps farmers use environmentally sustainable farming practices. On Fair Trade farms, producers must adhere to strict standards regarding the use and handling of pesticides; the protection of natural waters, virgin forest, and other ecosystems of high ecological value; and the management of erosion and waste. Source: TransFair USA
Wholesome® Sweeteners Evaporated Cane Juice Organic Sugar photo: Source Amazon
Domino® Sugar photo: Source Amazon
- Organic, sustainably harvested without chemical fertilizers, antibiotics, and pesticides
- No animal byproducts used in processing (i.e., natural charcoal)
- Fairtrade to support farmers and their families around the world
- Non-GMO; no genetically modified organisms
Local Retailers (select)
- Organic Basic Foods LLC (Hoboken, NJ)
- Whole Foods Markets