Basics of Alkali Refining & Water Washing of Vegetable Oils ( Andrew Logan )

Purpose of Alkali Refining

• Removing of impurities from oil

– Phospholipids (gums)

– Colour bodies

– Metal Ions – Pro-oxidants

• Iron

• Copper

– Free Fatty Acids

– Solids – meal fines

Oil Impurities

• Phospholipids

– cause emulsions

– darken oil with heat

– interfere with crystallization

• Colour Bodies

– Some have nutritional value

– Remove to add consumer appeal & functionality in industrial uses

(not heat stable)

• Metal Ions

– act as pro-oxidants degrading the oil quality & stability

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