By Vijayendran M

By Vijayendran M

Dextrose, also known as glucose, is a simple sugar that is commonly used as a sweetener and a source of energy. It is produced from maize starch by using a method called hydrolysis. Food and beverage, pharmaceutical, and other sectors such as chemicals consume dextrose in India. In this, the pharmaceutical sector consumes the most dextrose, followed by the food and beverage sector and others. The dextrose market in India has been steadily growing in recent years due to an increase in demand in the food and non-food sectors.

Dextrose Production Scenario?

Corn Wet Millers (CWMs) are companies that process corn through a wet milling process to produce various products such as starch, sweeteners, ethanol, and animal feed. Secondary converters (SCs) are companies that procure native starch from CWMs and convert it to modified starch, sweeteners, or other products. In India, dextrose manufacture is limited to CWMs. Due to large costs, technology, and stringent emission restrictions, SCs are not currently being produced. The primary raw material used for dextrose production by producers in India is corn starch and the industry has developed a robust supply chain to ensure a consistent supply of high-quality corn starch for its production. In addition to corn starch, some manufacturers in India also use other raw materials such as cassava starch and potato starch to produce dextrose. However, corn starch is the most commonly used raw material due to its availability and cost-effectiveness.

Key Players in the Indian Market

Dextrose production in India is mainly contributed by domestic players. Key players are Gujarat Ambuja, Maize Products, Sukhjit Starch, Universal Starch, Tirupathi Starch and Chemicals, Roquette, Everest Starch and Gulshan Polyols. The dextrose market in India is expected to continue to grow; due to increasing demand, many companies expanded their production capacity such as Gujarat Ambuja, Universal Starch etc. Gujarat Ambuja and Roquette are the major producers and exporters from the Indian market.

Trade (Import & Export)

Dextrose export opportunities from India are encouraging, and the market is anticipated to expand more in the years to come. The demand for Indian dextrose products in the worldwide market is anticipated to be driven by the rising demand for natural sweeteners and the expanding pharmaceutical and food sectors. India exports food and pharmaceutical-grade dextrose to Africa, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Nepal, and UAE. The import scenario of dextrose in India is relatively small as India is a net exporter of dextrose. India imports pharmaceutical-grade dextrose from China, the USA and other countries.

End-use Sectors and applications

The demand for dextrose (Dextrose Monohydrate (DMH) and Anhydrous Dextrose (DAH)) is seen in various sectors: Food & beverages sectors such as bakery, beverages, confectionery, and other foods. Non-food such as animal feed, pet foods etc.

Bakery and breakfast cereals: Dextrose is commonly used in the baking industry as a sweetener, fermentation aid, and bulking agent. In baking applications, it is often used to provide sweetness, improve texture, and enhance browning. It is commonly added to bread, cakes, cookies, and other baked goods. Dextrose can also be used as a fermentation aid to help activate the yeast and improve the dough structure. Breakfast cereals are marketed as healthy and nutritious, and DMH is often used as a natural sweetener that does not have a high glycaemic index.

Beverages:  Dextrose is a type of simple sugar that is easily dissolved in water, making it a convenient sweetener for beverages. It is also used as a source of energy and to enhance the flavour of beverages. It is consumed in sports, energy, carbonated, and fruit drinks. Sports and energy drinks consume more to help replenish energy levels during and after physical activity.

Confectionery: Dextrose is a commonly used ingredient in the confectionery industry in India due to its sweetness, bulk, and texture-improving properties. It is often used as a sweetener in hard candies, soft candies, and chewy candies. It helps to provide sweetness and enhance candy flavour. In Chocolates, it is used to provide sweetness and balance the bitterness of cocoa powder. Dextrose is the perfect choice in confectionary as it provides sweetness, texture improvements, stability, and is cost-effective.

Pharmaceutical and Nutraceutical: Dextrose helps to replenish lost nutrients and electrolytes. It provides metabolic energy and is used in oral rehydration salts (ORS) and in intravenous (IV) fluids to provide nutrients to patients under intensive care and is used as a stabiliser in pharmaceuticals often to produce medicines such as antibiotics that require dry-powder preparations, bulking agent in medicines such as tablets, capsules, and syrups. In supplements, Dextrose is commonly used in sports supplements such as pre-workout, intra-workout, and post-workout supplements. It is used as a carbohydrate source to provide energy to the body during exercise.

Animal Feed: Dextrose is a commonly used ingredient in animal feed in India due to its ability to provide a quick source of energy to animals. Dextrose also acts as a nutrition supplement and buffering agent in veterinary medicine in animal feed (Poultry, swine, cattle, and aquaculture feed). In the veterinary industry, dextrose is applied in various animal drugs as a carrier. Since it is Pyrogens-free, it is widely used in animal infusions and injections.


In India, dextrose is primarily used in the healthcare sector followed by food and beverage sectors and animal feed. The healthcare industry in India is one of the major consumers of dextrose, with applications in intravenous solutions, blood transfusions, and other medical treatments. In the food industry, dextrose is widely used as a sweetener and a source of energy, especially in the production of confectionery and baked goods. The growing demand for processed foods and beverages in India has led to an increased usage of dextrose in this sector as well. Dextrose manufacturing is limited to CWMs such as Gujarat Ambuja, Roquette India etc. Dextrose is produced majorly from corn starch in India. Dextrose Monohydrate (DMH) and Anhydrous Dextrose (DAH) are two types of Dextrose. Compared to anhydrous dextrose, dextrose monohydrate has double the production volume and higher demand. In terms of regional market share, India’s western region consumes the most dextrose, followed by northern and southern regions. Overall, the dextrose market in India is expected to continue to grow in the coming years, driven by factors such as increasing demand from the healthcare sector; the growing demand for processed foods and beverages in India has led to an increased usage of dextrose in this sector as well.

Author is an Associate Project Manager at F1rst with a postgraduate in Bio-Chemical Technology (BCT). For more information about this study, you can reach out to