Fats and Seed Oils
Seed oil is the second by-product derived by the processing of oilseeds and is intended for direct and indirect consumption by the food, animal feed, and chemical industries. The most important vegetable oils are soybean oil, sunflower oil, corn oil, rapeseed oil and palm oil.
In particular, seed oils are available in the following key market sectors:
- in standardized formats and in different packages for Retail (home consumption) and Wholesale (e.g. hotels, restaurants)
- in the food industry as a raw material in products such as salad dressings, mayonnaise, margarine, canned foods, etc.
- in bulk, as animal feed
- in the chemical industry as a raw material for resins, paints, etc.
- as a raw material for the production of “green” fuels (biodiesel)
Oils are an essential element of human diet for preserving good health. They give more energy per unit of weight (9 cal / g), as compared to other nutrients. Nowadays, oils constitute about 1/3 of the intake of energy in most developed countries. Polyunsaturated fatty acids arising from N-3 and H 6 may be converted into a number of metabolites called eicosanoids, which regulate numerous biological functions. Low fat intake may lead to lack of essential fatty acids and fat-soluble vitamins.
Soya Mills offers the following products in this category:
- Soybean oil (crude and refined)
- Sunflower oil (crude and refined)
- Corn oil (crude and refined)
- Rapeseed oil (crude and refined)
- Cottonseed oil (crude and refined)
- Palm oil and its fractions (crude and refined)
The aforementioned products are available in bulk, in drums of 200 kg, and in 1 MT IBC. They are transported by trucks, trains and ships.
Soybean oil is high in polyunsaturated fatty acids and low in saturated fatty acids. Coupled with palm oil, the two record the highest consumption worldwide. In Greece, soybean oil is mainly absorbed by the food industry (sweets, sauces, margarines) and to a lesser extent by households, as an edible commodity. Apart from the food industry, soybean oil is used in the chemical industry, but also in applications such as those in the varnish and biofuel industries.
Sunflower oil holds considerable nutritional properties, which are secured by the balance of the entirety of fatty acids, which contain high value sterols and high tocopherols (including vitamin E). The composition of the fatty acid, rich in linoleic acid (Omega 6), forms a type of oil which is ideal for cooking. Sunflower oil champions domestic use in Greece, while it is also used as a major ingredient of various dressings (e.g. mayonnaise), as well as a liquid ingredient in margarines and spreads.
Corn oil is produced as a by-product during the process of milling corn to produce starch. Although oil is a small percentage of the seed (about 3%), the large corn production worldwide highlights corn oil as one of the most important edible oils. It has been classified as a vegetable oil high in linoleic acid. Compared to other oils, corn oil exhibits high oxidative stability and for this reason it is preferred for frying.
Rapeseed Oil uniquely combines low content in saturated fatty acids and high content in monounsaturated fatty acids. It is a rich source of H-3 fatty acids (linoleic acid) enhancing a balanced diet. Apart from edible uses, rapeseed oil is one of the main sources of green fuel, which is absorbed by the fuel distributors. In addition, it is used as a lubricant on various machines, but also as hydraulic oil in the forest industry.
Cottonseed oil is produced by cottonseeds by means of extrusion. Is has been classified as a vegetable oil, high in linoleic acid. As compared to other liquid oils, cottonseed features a large content of saturated fatty acids. The acidic cottonseed oil contributes to the production of biodiesel, while the refined one is largely used in the food industry.
Palm oil is an edible vegetable oil. It has a melting point of 37 ° C and has a higher content of saturated fatty acids, as compared to other vegetable oils. It is produced mainly in Africa and Southeast Asia, as well as in parts of South America. While its production costs are very low, crops are highly efficient. Its processing produces solid and liquid fractions. More specifically, oleins - the liquid fractions - are widely used as cooking oils, suitable for frying. Stearins – the solid fractions – are ingredients in margarine, while spreads have applications in bakery, confectionery and various other foods.