Industrial Uses of Guar Gum Plant
Authors: Rajdeep Mundiyara1, Prem Kumar2 and Mamta Bajya3
1Seed Officer, Rajasthan State Seeds Corporation,Mandore, Jodhpure
2 Department of Plant Philology, Jobner
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The Guar plant is an annual plant, extremely drought resistant and thrives in semiarid regions where most plants perish. The Guar plant grows best in sandy soils and areas of West, Northwest India and parts of Pakistan. The Guar plant is an important source of nutrition to animals and humans. The plant regenerates soil nitrogen and the endosperm of guar seed is an important hydrocolloid widely used across a broad spectrum of industries. Guar has been in such rampant demand from oil and gas drillers that manufacturers who need it for other uses, like thickening ice cream, have hard a hard time securing supplies. Currently, India is the main producers of cluster bean accounting 80% production of the total world, whereas Rajasthan is the largest cultivator of guar in the country.

Common Name

Common Name: Cluster Bean Latin Name : Cyamopsis tetragonoloba English : Guar, Cyamopsis Tetragonalobus Family : Fabaceae Hindi : Gawar

Tamil : Kotthavarai

Guar plant

The Guar plant is an annual plant flourishes in extremely drought resistant and semiarid regions. The Guar plant requires reasonably warm weather and needs moderate intermittent rainfall with plenty of sunshine. The guar plant grows from 2 feet to 9 feet high. The plant's flower buds start out white and change to a light pink as the flower opens. The flowers turn deep purple and are followed by fleshy seed pods which ripen and harvested in summer. The seed pods grow in clusters giving guar the common name cluster-bean. A gum extracted from the guar beans forms a gel in water, commonly referred to as guar gum. Guar is extremely drought resistant and thrives in semi-arid regions where few plants thrive. When limited moisture is available the plant will stop growing but does not die.


Guar has been cultivated in India for ages for use of its tender pods as fresh vegetables and other parts of the plant to be used as cattle feed. A severe locust bean gum shortage, just after the Second World War, adversely affected the paper and textile industries. Guar Gum was found to be the most suitable substitute for scarce locust bean gum. The technology of Guar Gum extraction was commercialized in 1953 in the USA and after a decade in India. Guar gum has been used for centuries as a thickening agent for foods and pharmaceuticals. It continues to find extensive use for these applications as well as the paper, textile,and oil drilling industries.

Chemical Constituents

Guar is a galactomannan polysaccharide that forms a viscous gel when placed in contact with water. It forms solutions that range from slightly acidic to neutral pH. Even at low concentrations guar gum forms gels in water. Food grade guar gum contains 80% guaran (a galactomannan composed of D-mannose and D-galactose units) with an average molecular weight of 220 kDa. However, guar gum is not a uniform product and its viscosity may vary in proportion to the degree of galactomannan cross-linking.

C limate

Cluster bean is a hardy plant tolerant to drought grown widely in sub-tropics and tropics of India. Prefers long day condition for growth and short day conditions for flowering. The Guar crop is sown after the first rains in July and harvested in late October. The guar bean requires full sunshine, moderately frequent rain, and well-drained soil for good crop.


Cluster bean grows nicely in alluvial soils and sandy loams it can tolerate a pH of 7 to 8. soil should be prepared to good tilth for better plant growth.

Time of sowing

Cluster bean grows thrice. In an year, spring, summer and rainy season. However under mild winter a third crop can be taken.

Seed rate and Spacing

Guar seeds are planted at the rate of 30 kilograms/hectare (9–11 lb /acre at a spacing of 45-60 x 20–30 cm (18–24 x 8–12 in) in February–March and June–July. During rainy season, the seeds are sown 2–3 cm deep on ridges and in furrows during summer months.


Requirement of manures and fertilizers of cluster bean is less because it is sensitive crop. Well decomposed. FYM is applied up to 20 t/ha. Nitrogen 20 kg / ha; 70 kg/ha P and K are to be given. Nitrogen may be applied in two splits. Half quantity of nitrogen at the time of sowing along with total quantity of P and K. Remaining half quantity of Nitrogen is given at flowering stage. Meager information is available for genetic variability in cluster bean addressing the qualitative traits After harvesting, when the pods become dry through sunlight, they are beaten off and during this process, the seeds come out of the pods.


Rainy season crop is grown as rainfed. In case of spring season irrigation is necessary.


Durga bahar

It is a derivative of pusa navabahar and ROC 401. plants are erect, photosensitive, single stemmed, flowers are white, pods are long, born in clusters, seed yield is

IC 11521

It is photo insensitive variety. It is suitable for summer and rainy season.

Pusa mausami

It is good for rainy season, photo sensitive variety.

Pusa nav bahar

It consists of good characters of both Pusa mausami and Pusa sada bahar.

Pusa sada bahar

It is selection from local cultivar from Rajasthan, non-branching type


It is a shallow rooted crop. Intercultural operations are done shallow to provide good condition for crop growth and keep down the weed. Parthenium is also controlled by the application 2,4 – D and Disodium methane arsenate (DSMA) each at 2 kg per ha.

Harvesting and yield

It is quick growing crop. It starts pods bearing 40 days after sowing depending upon variety. Pods are picked at tender stage. Average yield of green pods is 50 Q per ha; dry seeds 10 g per ha.

Guar Gum

Guar gum is a dietary fiber obtained from the endosperm of the Indian cluster bean. The endosperm can account for more than 40% of the seed weight and is separated and ground to form commercial guar gum. Guar gum is a food additive shown to reduce serum cholesterol. It appears to have positive effects on blood glucose.

Guar Gum is a white to yellowish white powder. It is nearly odorless. Fine finished Guar Gum Powder is available in different viscosities and different granulometries depending on the desired viscosity development and application .Partially hydrolyzed guar gum (PHGG) is produced by the partial enzymatic hydrolysis of guaran, the galactomannan of the endosperm of guar seeds (guar gum). It is a neutral polysaccharide consisting of a mannose backbone chain with single galactose side units occurring on almost two out of every three mannose units.

PHGG as sold commercially is completely soluble, acid and heat stable, unaffected by ions, and will not gel at high concentrations. Commercial PHGG is approximately 75% dietary fiber and has minimal effect on taste and texture in food and beverage items. PHGG is fully fermentable in the large bowel, with a high rate of volatile fatty acid formation. The pH of the feces is lowered along with an increase in fecal bulk that mainly consists of bacterial cell mass and water. Clinical studies have demonstrated a pre biotic effect of PHGG. Minimum standards for good quality guar gum have been defined in the United States FCC and by European Union Specifications as under: Moisture: 14% max, . Ash (total): 1.5% max., Acid Insoluble Residue: 4% max., Galactomannan: 75% min. Protein: 7% max., Arsenic: 3 ppm max.. Lead: 10 ppm max.. Zinc: 25 ppm max., Copper & Zinc: 50 ppm max.


Cattle feed

In the past Guar used to feed to cattle or used as a green manure but the use as cattle feed is now rare due to the rising cost.

Guar Gum in food

Guar is the main the source of guar gum. Guar beans have a large endosperm that contains galactomannan gum, a substance which forms a gel in water. This is commonly known as guar gum and is used in dairy products like ice cream and as a stabilizer in cheese and cold-meat processing. Guar gum powder is used in the production of bread. Even small quantities of guar gum powder added to the dough increase the yield, give greater resiliency, improve texture and give longer shelf life. Guar Gum can be used as stabilizer for chocolate drinks, fruit nectars, and juices.

Guar Gum Industrial uses

Derivatives of guar gum used in industrial applications, such as the paper and textile industry, ore flotation, the manufacture of explosives and hydraulic fracturing of oil and gas formations. Guar gum is often cross linked with boron or chromium ions to make it more stable and heat resistant. The cross linking of guar with metal ions results in linear gel that does not block the formation and helps efficiently in formation cleaning process. The borate - guar reaction is reversible, and depends on the pH of the solution.

Guar replaces target beverages, mayo, ketchup

Manufacturers of fruit beverages, mayonnaise and ketchup have access to a new range of guar gum replacers just launched by Premium Ingredients.


Guar Gum can be used as a thickener for various cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. In compressed tablets Guar Gum can be used as a binder and disintegrator.

Guar Gum as a medicine

Guar Gum used in weight loss, because bulk-forming fibers may impart a “feeling of fullness,” they have been used to help curb appetite. Guar gum has been reported to have varied effects on blood pressure. Guar gum may cause GI obstruction. Use guar gum cautiously in diabetic patients. Flatulence and other symptoms of GI distress are common during initial use.

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