California and Hawaiian Sugar Company (C&H) was founded in 1906 and operated from 1921 to 1993 as an agricultural cooperative marketing association owned by the member sugar companies in Hawaii. Its headquarters are in Crockett in unincorporated Contra Costa County, California. In 1993, the member companies sold their interests in C&H to Alexander & Baldwin in Honolulu, and the refining company’s status changed from a cooperative to a corporation. Alexander & Baldwin subsequently sold its majority share to an investment group in 1998, retaining a 40% common stock interest in the recapitalized company. In 2005, the common stock shares were acquired by American Sugar Refining (ASR, better known as Domino Sugar), a company owned by Florida Crystals and the Sugar Cane Growers Cooperative of Florida. Florida Crystals is a privately held company that is part of FLO-SUN, a sugar empire of the Fanjul family whose origins trace to Spanish-Cuban sugar plantations of the early 19th century.
The C&H brand is one of the leading sugar brands in the company’s markets (where it is not the de facto leader), largely due to advertisements stressing their exclusive use of cane sugar, believed by some to be superior to sugar from the sugar beet.
C&H’s primary market is west of the Mississippi River in the United States, although some sugar is sold in various east coast stores. A number of high-profile restaurants, bakeries and hotels have C&H sugar shipped to them where it is not available through local distribution channels. More than 70 types, grades, and package sizes are sold within the two major groupings of grocery and industrial products. About 700,000 short tons (640,000 metric tons) of sugar per year are processed. The refinery at Crockett, California, refines, packages, and markets all of the output from Hawaii’s sugar factories, such as the remaining factory of Alexander & Baldwin, the Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company on Maui.