Palm oil: Processing, characterization and utilization in the food industry – A review
The oil palm tree is an ancient tropical plant that originated from West Africa. Palm oil has centuries׳ long use as food and medicine. This review covers the recent significant materials found in the literature on palm oil processing, refining, and use in frying especially in blends with other vegetable oils. Crude palm oil (CPO) is obtained from the fruit of the oil palm tree (Elaeis guineensis). The oil is rich in palmitic acid, β-carotene and vitamin E. CPO has been fractionated mainly into liquid palm olein and solid palm stearin in order to diversify its food applications. Palm oil is highly stable during frying especially due to the synergistic activity of β-carotene and tocotrienol. In recent years there has been a shift from the use of animal fats and hydrogenated vegetable oils in frying and other food applications. The use of naturally stable oils such as palm oil and composite oils like blends of palm oil and other fats and oils is practiced to ensure that maximum benefits are derived from the oils. Blending offers functional, nutritional and technical advantages, such as tailoring the oil to suit frying applications. The objective of this review is to combine and condense the body of research on the processing, characterization and use of palm oil especially in frying as well as suggest areas that need further research.
Journal: Food Bioscience - Volume 10, 1 June 2015, Pages 26–41