Each of us makes regular use of edible use to prepare various dishes daily. Have you every though why edible oil processing is important for us? There are many reasons but the most important one is our health. Edible oils having high fatty contents needs to be refined before using as cooking oil. The most basic purpose of oil refining process is to remove excess fatty acids and prevent the oils from oxidation. This process is not only intended to remove extra fatty acids, but to remove undesired components, color, and odor which otherwise may cause negative on the taste, odor, and appearance of the product. The extracted oil is thinner without fatty acids, colorless, and odorless. Here I am explaining the complete oil refining process in detail.
Neutralization of crude oil by removing fatty acids: in this process the oil is neutralized by reaction with caustic soda (NaOH) in order to remove fatty acids. Oil is heated up to about 60°C by thermal fluid coils and then stirred by stirrer. Finally, the fatty acids are settled at the bottom as alkali soaps which is known as soapstock from where it is taken out into soap pan.
Removal of impurities and color: This neutralized oil is then passed through another vessel called bleacher where color of the oil is improved by bleaching process with the help of chemicals such as carbon black and bleaching clay. This bleaching process is done under vacuum. After that oil goes for filtration where bleaching clay and chemicals are washed and cleaned.
Removal of unpleasant smell: A deodorizer is used where oil is heated about 110°C through thermal fluid coils and then live steam clean is used to the oil from the bottom steam nozzles. The temperature of oil is raised up to 200 to 220°C through thermal fluid coils. This process is done under vacuum. The smell is removed in deodorizer under this process and then oil is cooled.
Micro filtration: This process is an important part of oil refining process which is carried out in a micro filter closed which makes the final edible oil that is sometimes referred as refined edible oil. This micro filtration process is specifically designed for more effective filtration and best quality of final refined edible oil.
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