The Determination Of Acid Value Levels In Commercial Soya Bean Oil And Olive Oil

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Rural oil extraction usually occurs near the areas of raw material production. This provides the smallscale processor with access to raw materials, helps to ensure that perishable oil crops are processed quickly, and reduces transport costs. For rural communities and the urban poor, unrefined vegetable oils contribute significantly to the total amount of oil consumed. Crude oils are affordable to low-income groups and serve as important sources of b -carotene and tocopherols.

To maintain the quality of the raw material, care is needed during and after the harvesting of oilbearing fruits that are perishable and susceptible to fat breakdown. Bruising of fresh palm fruits accelerates lipase activity leading to fat degradation. Oil-bearing crops such as sheanuts are prone to mould infestation during storage. This is curtailed by heat treatment: steaming or boiling, coupled with sun-drying to reduce the moisture content.

Storage. The moisture content of oil seeds and nuts influences the quality of raw materials over time. In most rural operations, sun-drying reduces the moisture content of oil seeds to below 10 percent. Adequate ventilation or aeration of the seeds or nuts during storage ensures that low moisture levels are maintained and microbial development is avoided. This is important in the storage of groundnuts which are highly susceptible to aflatoxin contamination through the growth of Aspergillusflavus. Since aflatoxins and pesticides are not removed by rural extraction techniques, microbial contamination and the application of insecticides should be avoided. There is a need for storage practices which are affordable and available to the small-scale processor. Perishable raw materials such as palm fruits should be processed as soon as possible after harvesting.

In humid developing countries, the sun-drying of oil seeds with a high moisture content, such as mature coconut, is slow and inefficient. Such conditions promote mould growth which results in high free fatty acid levels and poor organoleptic qualities. Coconut oil for human consumption should be obtained soon after harvest.

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