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Characterization of pili nut (Canarium ovatum) oil: Fatty acid and triacylglycerol composition and physicochemical properties


The fatty acid and triacylglycerol composition of pili nut (Canarium ovatum) oil and fractions were analyzed by gas chromatography and reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography, respectively. The oil obtained by solvent extraction was low in polyunsaturated fatty acids and high in saturates. The polyunsaturated fatty acid (18∶2 and 18∶3) contents were less than 11%, whereas palmitic (16∶0) and stearic acid (18∶0) were 33.3 and 10.9%, respectively. The saturated fatty acid level of the low-melting fraction oil was reduced from 44.4 to 35.5% and the total unsaturated fatty acid levels were increased from 55.6 to 65% by fractional crystallization. Triacylglycerol analysis showed that the high-melting fraction (HM) from pili nut oil consisted of POP, POS, and SOS+SSO (P=palmitic acid, O=oleic acid, and S=stearic acid) in the proportion of 48.6, 38.8, and 8.7%, respectively. The physicochemical properties of the HM fraction were studied using differential scanning calorimetry and pulsed nuclear magnetic resonance. The results showed that the melting range and solid fat content of the HM fraction were very similar to those isolated from cocoa butter and olive oil. The content of POP played an important role in determining the melting range of the HM fraction. It is suggested that this HM fraction may have applications as a cocoa butter substitute in confectionery products.

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Kakuda, Y., Jahaniaval, F., Marcone, M.F. et al. Characterization of pili nut (Canarium ovatum) oil: Fatty acid and triacylglycerol composition and physicochemical properties. J Amer Oil Chem Soc 77, 991–997 (2000).

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Key Words

  • Canarium ovatum
  • cocoa butter substitute
  • fractional crystallization
  • hard fraction
  • pili nut oil
  • triacylglycerol composition