Molasses is a thick by-product from the processing of the sugar beet or sugar cane into sugar. (In some parts of the US, molasses also refers to syrup.) The word molasses comes from the Portuguese word melaço, which comes from "meli", the Greek word for "honey". The quality of molasses depends on the maturity of the sugar cane or beet, the amount of sugar extracted, and the method of extraction. Sweet Sorghum syrup is known as molasses in some parts of the U.S., though it is not true molasses.