Technical News Features

Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society

, Volume 58, Issue 1, pp 51A-54A

First online:

Chemical and physical effects of processing fats and oils

  • T. L. MountsAffiliated withU.S. Department of Agriculture, Northern Regional Research Center, Agricultural Research, Science and Education Administration

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Soybean oil is processed for a variety of food uses, salad/cooking oil, margarine and shortening. Crude soybean oil is composed mainly of triglycerides but also contains measurable amounts of minor constituents that may have beneficial or detrimental effects on oil characteristics. The nature of these minor constituents, the role they play in oil stability or deterioration and their fate during processing are subjects of this review. Iodine value, fatty acid composition, solid fat index and congeal point are chemical and physical characteristics of oil that are affected by the hydrogenation process. Techniques and effects of degumming, alkali refining, bleaching, hydrogenation, winterization and deodorization are discussed. Utilization or disposal of by-products or wastes from each processing step is reviewed.