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Industrialization and the triumph of sugar beet

1820s
In contrast to Germany, beet sugar production in France continues to be government-funded and thus this branch of industry endures. Consequently, it is hardly surprising that major innovations like the development of juice extraction through maceration by Mathieu de Dombasle originate in France.
1829
In Kirchwiedern/Moravia imperial-royal senior lieutenant Franz Grebner founds the first Austrian beet sugar factory after the end of the Continental System. It is later relocated to nearby Dačice where its director Jakob Christoph Rad will invent the cube sugar.
1834
In Quedlinburg the brothers Louis and Carl Hanewald together with Conradin Friedrich Eduard Zier and Ernst Wilhelm Arnoldi found a sugar factory and market the sugar production procedure which is applied there. With this, the founding of more than 100 beet sugar factories is encouraged.
1837
Founding of the „Badische Gesellschaft für Zuckerfabrikation“ [Baden company for sugar production] in Waghäusel. There, Sebastian Schuzenbach develops a method where sugar beets are preserved before the sugar extraction through drying. By this means, sugar can be produced throughout the year resulting in a better utilization of the facilities.
1847
Eilhard Mitscherlich develops a handy polarimeter which is then used for sugar determination in almost every sugar factory.
1848
First usage of a steam boiler in the sugar industry.
As from 1850
The competition between cane and beet sugar leads to a dramatic drop in prices. Thus, sugar becomes affordable for the masses.
1850
In reaction by the sugar manufacturers to the beet tax, which has already been introduced in 1841, the "Verein für die Rübenzuckerindustrie im Zollverein" [association for the beet sugar industry within the customs union] is founded in Magdeburg. It is the first German industrial association.
1851
The journal of the association for the beet sugar industry within the customs union is published for the first time. These and subsequent sugar related journals speed up technical progress tremendously as renowned chemists, technicians and entrepreneurs have their say, former experiences are discussed and further research is encouraged.
1865
Julius Robert develops the diffusion methods for juice extraction and thus lays the essential foundations for the development of sugar factories to large enterprises.
1867
In Berlin, the research institute for the sugar industry is founded.
Around 1880
40 % of the European beet sugar are produced in the empire turning sugar into the main export product of the empire.
1885
Founding of the sugar Berufsgenossenschaft [occupational insurance association].
1891
Founding of the Verein der Rohzuckerfabriken im Deutschen Reich [raw sugar factories association in the German Reich].
1897
Merging of the entire German sugar industry into the Verein der Deutschen Zuckerindustrie [German sugar industry association] and formation of the raw sugar factories syndicate. A year later, the refineries syndicate follows.
Founding of the International Commission for Uniform Methods of Sugar Analysis (ICUMSA) in Hamburg at Alexander Herzfeld’s suggestion.
1902
Conclusion of the Brussels sugar convention. Only this international trade agreement, signed by the most important beet and cane sugar producers, brings the ruinous premiums race to an end and guarantees the sugar producers their national market. Cartels and export incentives are abolished.
1914-18
World War I: The wartime economy, government controlled since 1915, limits beet cultivation to a great extent, in particular to the benefit of cereals cultivation. Shortage of workers, price increases for auxiliary material, the low pay of the beets and a low sugar price make the beet cultivation in Germany go down by over 25 percent. By the end of the war only one third of the pre-war amount of sugar is still produced in Europe.
1920
The Badische Gesellschaft für Zuckerfabrikation [Baden company for sugar production ] in Waghäusel and the sugar factory Frankenthal join together to form a special interest group. Shortly after, the sugar factories in Heilbronn, Stuttgart and Offstein follow with their plants.
1926
Founding of the Süddeutsche Zucker-Aktiengesellschaft based in Mannheim by the sugar companies of the special interest group.