What is Sucrose?

Sucrose (chemical formula: C12H22O11) is the scientific name for what is more commonly known to most of us as just ‘sugar’. Sucrose is naturally produced in plants such as the sugarcane or sugar beet. It is an odourless, hard white crystal or powder that is sweet to the taste. Sucrose is soluble in water and slightly soluble in alcohol. 

What is Sucrose used for?

Sucrose is used as a sweetener in food and drink as well as being used in the manufacturing of pharmaceutical products, chemical intermediates for detergents, emulsifying agents and as an intermediate for other sucrose derivatives to name a few.

Sucrose is refined into the table sugar found in  most households cupboards
Sucrose is refined into the table sugar found in  most households cupboards

Sucrose Hazards

The routes of exposure for sucrose include; inhalation, ingestion and skin and eye contact. 

Inhalation of sucrose is not thought to cause any respiratory irritation, however good hygiene practice requires exposure is minimised and control measures are put in place in an occupational setting. Persons with existing conditions such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, circulatory or nervous system damage or kidney damage, may incur further damage if inhaled. 

Ingestion of sucrose is unlikely to harm your health, but it may still be damaging to the health of individuals suffering from existing liver or kidney damage. Extremely large doses of sucrose may cause gastrointestinal discomfort exhibited by nausea and vomiting. 

Skin contact with sucrose is not thought to be a skin irritant, however good hygiene practices are always recommended to ensure exposure is minimised in an occupational setting.

Eye exposure can cause discomfort and irritation characterised by tearing and temporary redness. Slight abrasive damage may also result.

Sucrose Safety

If inhaled, remove the patient from the contaminated area to the nearest fresh air source. Encourage the patient to blow their nose to clear their air passages. Seek medical attention in the event of irritation or discomfort. 

If swallowed, immediately provide a glass of water to the patient. First aid is generally not necessary, but if in doubt, seek medical attention. 

If skin exposure occurs, flush the affected skin and hair with running water and soap. Seek medical attention in the event of irritation.

If the chemical is exposed to the eyes, flush the eyes out immediately with fresh running water, remembering to wash under the eyelids. Seek medical attention if irritation persists.

Sucrose Safety Handling

Emergency eyewash fountains should be accessible in the immediate area of the potential exposure to the chemical and there should always be adequate ventilation to remove or dilute any air contaminants (install local exhaust if necessary). 

The PPE recommended when handling large quantities of sucrose includes; safety glasses with side shields, chemical goggles, dust respirators, lab coats, overalls and rubber or PVC gloves. A skin barrier cream is also recommended in the event of skin exposure.

For more information on the safe handling of sucrose, refer to your SDS. Click here for a trial of our SDS Management Software or contact us at for more information about our chemicals management solutions. 

Chemwatch has the largest collection of SDS in the world. For a FREE copy of the Chemwatch-authored SDS for Sucrose, click the button below.