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Castor oil (Ricinus communis): a review on the chemical composition and physicochemical properties


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Increasing world population has markedly increased the demand for vegetable oils for domestic and industrial purposes. Plant-based vegetable oils have been identified as one of the oils with high nutritive value. Castor plant is one of the oilseed with rich oil content owing to its high monounsaturated fatty acid and bioactive compounds. Its fatty acid profile constitutes mainly of ricinoleic acid and other minor acids such as stearic, palmitic, and oleic acid. Ricinoleic acid of castor oil is unique among all other vegetable oils, making it attractive for a wide spectrum of applications. The predominant triglyceride component in the oil is triricinolein. Minor biological compounds including carotenoid, tocopherol, tocotrienol, phytosterol, phospholipid, phytochemical, and phenolic compounds are present in castor oil. These compounds offer oxidation stability, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties to the oil. The acid, anisidine, iodine, viscosity, and saponification values indicate that castor has good oil quality compared to other vegetable oils. Castor oil composition is influenced by the area of production and method of extraction adopted. The chemical structure of castor oil is centered on the ricinoleic acid and three major functional groups linked by glycerol moiety. More research on the oil’s component is being investigated nevertheless efficient and eco-friendly extraction methods are required. This review, therefore, summarizes the castor oil composition namely the triglyceride, various fatty acids and bioactive compounds, extraction methods, as well as its physicochemical properties.
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Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 2020 1/15 1
Food Science and Technology
ISSN 0101-2061 (Print)
ISSN 1678-457X (Online)
1 Introduction
Ricinus communis is an annual oilseed crop commonly
known as castor. It is sometimes called castor bean, but it’s not
a true bean in nature. Castor plant, belonging to the spurge
family Euphorbiaceae can grow in dierent geographical areas
(Anjani, 2014). Growth of castor is favorable around 20°C to
25°C whereas temperatures lower than 12°C or higher than
38°C aects germination and yield (Severinoetal., 2012;
Yinetal.,2019). e plant growth and appearance vary greatly
including its growth pattern, seed color and size, stem color and
foliage, as well as oil content Figure 1 (Ramanjaneyuluetal.,2013;
Sbihietal.,2018). Castor seed is characterized by its elongated,
ovoid, oval, or square shape; size variable, 0.5 to 1.5cm long.
Itsseed color comprises a base color that varies from brown or red
to black, brownish yellow, grey, and white Figure 1. epattern
as such ranges from ne to coarse vein-like or nely dotted to
broad splotches (Naik, 2018; Salihuet al.,2014). eleaves
change from pale green to dark red based on the content of
anthocyanin pigmentation (Sbihiet al.,2018). e shape of
the fruit is globe-like resembling a spiny capsule. e capsule
which encloses the seeds cracks when fully matured Figure 1.
Castor oil extracted from the seed mostly using n-hexane is
very versatile Figure 1. us, it is utilized in several sectors such as
agricultural, pharmaceutical, and industrial sectors. Productsof
castor oil include; ointments, nylon, varnishes, airplane engine
lubricants, hydraulic uids, dyes, detergents, plastics, synthetic
leather, cosmetics, and perfumes (Anjani,2014; Severinoetal.,2012;
Yingetal.,2017). Currently, castor oil production is predominant
in India, China, and Brazil (Gad-Elkareemet al.,2019;
Perdomoetal.,2013). e percentage of seed oil content ranges
from 40 to 60% and the annual oil production is about 1.8million
tons worldwide (Perdomoetal.,2013). e chemistry of castor
oil is based on the ricinoleic acid structure, carboxylic group,
hydroxyl group, and the single point of unsaturation (Mubofu,
2016; Yusufetal.,2015). ese features provide additional strength
to the oil structure. e fatty acid proles present in castor oil
are ricinoleic, oleic, stearic, palmitic, linoleic, linolenic acid and
among others. Among them, ricinoleic acid, a monounsaturated
fatty acid is the dominant acid constituting about 75 to 90% of
the total oil composition (Beruketal.,2018; Panhwaretal.,2016;
Yusufetal.,2015). It is worth saying that, the castor oil is the
sole oil with such a high amount of fatty acid and this makes it
unique from other vegetable oils. e fatty acid prole of castor
Castor oil (Ricinus communis): a review on the chemical composition and
physicochemical properties
Akwasi YEBOAH1, Sheng YING2, Jiannong LU1, Yu XIE1, Hanna AMOANIMAA-DEDE1,
Kwadwo Gyapong Agyenim BOATENG3, Miao CHEN1*, Xuegui YIN1*
Received 23May, 2020
Accepted 17 July, 2020
1College of Agricultural Sciences, Guangdong Ocean University, Zhanjiang, China
2Division of Plant Biology, Noble Research Institute, Ardmore, Oklahoma, USA
3Institute of Crop Sciences, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing, China
*Corresponding author:,
Increasing world population has markedly increased the demand for vegetable oils for domestic and industrial purposes. Plant-based
vegetable oils have been identied as one of the oils with high nutritive value. Castor plant is one of the oilseed with rich oil
content owing to its high monounsaturated fatty acid and bioactive compounds. Its fatty acid prole constitutes mainly of
ricinoleic acid and other minor acids such as stearic, palmitic, and oleic acid. Ricinoleic acid of castor oil is unique among
all other vegetable oils, making it attractive for a wide spectrum of applications. e predominant triglyceride component in
the oil is triricinolein. Minor biological compounds including carotenoid, tocopherol, tocotrienol, phytosterol, phospholipid,
phytochemical, and phenolic compounds are present in castor oil. ese compounds oer oxidation stability, anti-inammatory,
and antioxidant properties to the oil. e acid, anisidine, iodine, viscosity, and saponication values indicate that castor has
good oil quality compared to other vegetable oils. Castor oil composition is inuenced by the area of production and method
of extraction adopted. e chemical structure of castor oil is centered on the ricinoleic acid and three major functional groups
linked by glycerol moiety. More research on the oil’s component is being investigated nevertheless ecient and eco-friendly
extraction methods are required. is review, therefore, summarizes the castor oil composition namely the triglyceride, various
fatty acids and bioactive compounds, extraction methods, as well as its physicochemical properties.
Keywords: castor oilseed; fatty acids; phytosterols; ricinoleic acid; tocopherols.
Practical Application: Suitability of castor oil for domestic and industrial purposes.
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 20202 2/15
Composition of castor oil
has low amount of saturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids and
this enhance its stability (Yusufetal.,2015). Like other vegetable
oils, the composition and properties of castor oil vary with
respect to the method of extraction, geographical location, and
type of cultivar. e fatty acid prole of castor oil shares a higher
similarity with that of macadamia nut, palm kernel, olive, and
sunower oil (Nor Hayatietal.,2009; Sinanoglouetal.,2014).
Over the past decades, an increase in world population
has dramatically increased the demand for vegetable oils
for domestic and industrial purposes. Recent research has
unveiled that nutritional unsaturated acids play an important
role in reducing individual risks associated with diseases
such as asthma, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and diabetes
(Ganesanetal., 2018). Plant-based vegetable oils have been
identied to possess high amount of unsaturated fatty acid and
certain biological antioxidants that are eective against several
disease (Abdallahet al.,2015; Ganesanet al., 2018). Castor
plant is one of the non-oilseed with high nutritional value
owing to its rich amount of monounsaturated fatty acid (90%)
and bioactive active compounds such as vitamin E component
(tocopherols or tocotrienols), phospholipids, phenolics among
others (Saidetal.,2016; Sbihietal.,2018). ese compounds
also account for castor oils stability and avor making it
suitable for many purposes (Sedeeketal.,2012). Tocopherols
are one of the natural antioxidants present in castor oil with
anti-proliferative and anti-inammatory properties. e primary
tocopherol isomers, 43.1-96.62mg/g for δ and 30.89-52.7mg/g
for γ are relatively higher than those reported in olive, hazelnut,
and sunower (Saidet al.,2016; Sbihiet al.,2018). Also, its
physicochemical properties such as low acid and iodine value,
high saponication value, and thiobarbituric acid indicate that
castor oil has good oil quality. e acid and iodine value of the
oil reects its quality at 1.34mg KOH/g oil and 83gI2/100g,
respectively (Omarietal., 2015). Several studies have been
conducted on the fatty acid composition, however, information
about the biologically active compounds present in castor oil
is very limited.
In this present review, the structure of castor oil, extraction
methods, fatty acid prole, and neutral lipids (triglyceride) found
in castor oil have been highlighted. e various biologically
active compounds and physicochemical properties have also
been discussed. is review also compares the physicochemical
properties and composition of castor oil with other vegetable oils.
1.1 Extraction and uses of castor oilseed
In many parts of the world, castor oils are mostly purchased in
the form of cold-pressed oils. Research has revealed that castor oil
can be extracted by pressing, solvent extraction technique mostly
utilizing n-hexane, and super-critical carbon dioxide (SC-CO
(Danlamietal.,2015a, b; Guoetal.,2018). Beforeextraction,
castor seeds are rst cleaned to remove any unwanted material.
e seed is then put into decorticating machines to dehull the
shells leaving the kernels. e more ecient the decorticating
Figure 1. Castor; (A) young castor plant; (B) matured castor capsules; (C-F), dierent colors and varieties of castor seeds; (G) castor oil.
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 2020 3/15 3
process the lighter the oil color. Mostly, more than 90% of
castor oil is obtained by using solvent extraction technique.
However,the high price value and sustainability of biodiesel-based
solvents are the major concern with the use of this technique
(Patelet al.,2016). As a result, dierent solvents involving
ethanol and SC-CO2have been studied and adopted for castor
oil extraction. e use of aqueous solvents has demonstrated to
be as ecient as hexane with the additional benet of low solvent
requirement. Nevertheless, one setback with aqueous solvents is
the high energy production needed to separate the liquid from the
oil (Mutlu&Meier, 2010; Pateletal.,2016). SC-CO2 is preferred
to organic solvents (ethylene monoethyl ether, diethyl ketone,
methyl acetate) because it is cost-eective, non-explosive, and
non-toxic (Danlamietal.,2015a; Malekietal.,2013).
With extraction of castor oil using n-hexane, the oil content
vary from 34.6 to 56.6% (Panhwaretal.,2016; Sbihietal.,2018;
Severinoetal.,2015). is variation may be attributed to changes
in climatic conditions, geographical location, and type of variety
(Severinoetal.,2015). With SC-CO2 as an extraction medium,
only a few studies have analyzed the oil content in castor with
this technique. e reported optimal yield with SC-CO
castor is 9.29% (Danlamietal.,2015a). is value is very low
compared to that obtained by hexane (56.6%). Particle size of
the ground seed is one paramount factor that inuences oil yield
during extraction (Beveridgeetal.,2005). It has been found that
particle size of 0.35mm or lesser is desirable for maximum oil
yield (Beveridgeetal.,2005). Danlamietal. (2015a) reported
about 1mm particle sizes of the castor seeds which may be
due to the low oil yield. Moreso, operational conditions such
as temperature, time range, and moisture content vary and
inuence oil yield in oilseed (Danlamietal.,2015a). erefore,
studies involving these conditions may be further investigated to
improve castor oilseed yield by using SC-CO2. Overall, further
studies are required on castor oilseed extraction as well as the
eects on the oil quality.
Castor oil is a vital raw material and has been used to
produce more new bio-based chemicals and materials than any
other plant produced oils (Anjani, 2014). In the past, the use
of castor oil was limited mainly to manufacturing lamp oils,
industrial lubricants, and medicine (Anjani, 2014). However, a
better understanding of the chemical structure has broadened
it’s use and resulted in the production of more byproducts that
are benecial to humans. In medicine and other health-related
elds, castor oil has been widely used to treat several kinds of
diseases owing to its anti-inammatory property. Castor products
have been applied to treat minor issues like menstrual pain,
gastrointestinal infection, athlete’s foot, sunburns, and induction of
labor pain (Anjani, 2012; Kellyetal.,2013). It contains purgative
or laxative and thus can be good for constipation treatment.
In Nigeria, detoxied castor seed is used as a food condiment
(Salihuetal.,2014), a substance that benets human vision.
Limited information is available on the use of castor oilseed
in the food industry. e oil is used as a mold inhibitor in food
preservation and manufacturing of additives, avors, and candy
(Wilsonetal.,1998). Polyoxyl (e.g., Kolliphor EL) castor oil is
used as an emulsier and non-ionic solubilizer produced by
mixing ethylene oxide with castor oil (Pateletal.,2016). e oil
is greatly utilized in countries like Nepal, Pakistan, and India,
where it is poured on top of foodstus (wheat, pigeon pea) during
storage to prevent spoilage (Wilsonetal.,1998).
e seed cake of castor contains toxic compounds such
as ricin. is compound can aect human health and even
animals when consumed (Severinoetal.,2012). However, several
methods have been identied to be eective in detoxifying this
toxic component, thereby making it useful for other purposes.
Castormeal detoxied by autoclaving can be used to substitute about
67% of soybean meal for sheep (Borjaetal.,2017). Also,through
fermentation or boiling, castor meal is detoxied and this can be
used as a supplement in broiler-nisher (Akandeetal.,2016).
Castor residue called pomace with high amount of nitrogen is
used as animal feed and as organic fertilizer without any reported
harmful eects (Borjaetal.,2017).
1.2 Structure of castor oil
e structure of castor oil is made up of triglycerides that
lack glycerin. e triglyceride molecule has a long 18-carbon
chain with a double bond (Pateletal.,2016). Its chemistry is
based mainly on the ricinoleic acid structure, carboxyl group,
hydroxyl group, and a single point of unsaturation Figure2
(Mubofu, 2016; Ogunniyi, 2006). e carboxylic group in castor
oil molecule allows production of a wide range of esterication
products. e hydroxyl (-OH) group on the 12th carbon can be
acetylated or eliminated through a dehydration process to upsurge
the unsaturation to give a semi-drying oil (Neziheetal.,2010;
Sinadinović-Fišeretal., 2012). rough caustic fusion and
high-temperature pyrolysis, the reactive site of the hydroxyl
group can be splited to generate useful products with shorter
chains (Patelet al., 2016). In addition, the hydroxyl group
provides more strength to the structure to prevent the formation
of hydroperoxides (Razdi, 2012). e double bond in the
structure can be modied through the process of carboxylation,
epoxidation or hydrogenation (Alwaseemetal.,2014). Lastly, the
single point of unsaturation can be altered through the process
of epoxidation and hydrogenation. Hydrogenated castor oil,
which is a wax-like substance, can be obtained from the oil via
hydrogen reduction (Pateletal.,2016).
Figure 2. Structure of castor oil molecule. (A) indicates carboxylic
groups; (B) indicates double bonds; (C) indicates hydroxyl groups.
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 20204 4/15
Composition of castor oil
1.3 Composition of castor oilseed
e composition of castor oil is mainly composed of fatty
acids and neutral lipids (triglycerides). Other minor biological
active compounds that consist of unsaponiable fractions such
as carotenoids, phenolics, phospholipids, phytochemicals,
phytosterols, tocopherols, and tocotrienols are also present in
the oil. In the following subsections, these components and
their nutritional benets in castor oilseed explored by dierent
researchers have been discussed.
Triglycerides (TAG)
Majority of the triacylglyceride (TAG) molecules found in
castor oil contain three molecules of ricinoleic acid linked to a
glycerol moiety (Mubofu, 2016; Ogunniyi, 2006; Pateletal.,2016).
Ndiayeetal. (2005) reported the compositions of triglycerides
in castor oil Figure 3. A later study by Salimon and others
found only ve triacylglycerides in castor oil and their contents:
diricino-leoylpalmitoyl-glycerol (RRP) (0.9%), diricino-leoyllinoleoyl-
glycerol (RRL) (1.2%), diricino-leoyloleoyl-glycerol (RRO) (5.6%),
diricino-leoystearoyl-glycerol (RRS) (8.2%), and triricinolein (RRR)
(84.1%) (Salimonetal.,2010). Also, in two dierent studies the
contents of RRR (the most predominant TAG) were found to be at
70% and 63%, respectively (Lin, 2009; Planteetal.,2011). Several
factors such as the area of production, cultivar, oil extraction
process, harvesting period, and storage time aect triacylceride
composition of vegetable oils (Lin, 2009; Lin&Chen, 2012).
Hence, the relative percentage of triacylceride composition
in castor may be attributed to these factors. In addition, some
tetraacylglycerols in castor oil are (12-ricinoleoyl - ricinoleoyl)
-ricinoleoyl - linolenoyl-glycerol (RRRLn), (12-ricinoleoyl -
ricinoleoyl) - ricinoleoyl-stearoyl-glycerol (RRRS), (12-ricinoleoyl
- ricinoleoyl)- ricinoleoyl-oleoyl-glycerol (RRRO), (12-ricinoleoyl
- ricinoleoyl) -ricinoleoyl-palmitoyl-glycerol (RRRP), and
(12-ricinoleoyl - ricinoleoyl) - ricinoleoyl-linoleoyl-glycerol
(RRRL). ese acylglycerols were determined by HPLC, and
only 3% of the castor oil of the overall acylglycerols contained
polyhydroxy fatty acids, whereas the individual acylglycerols
were 0.5% (Lin&Chen, 2012).
Fatty acids
e discovery of fatty acids has been long known in plants.
Saalmülle rst reported castor oilseed fatty acid composition
in 1848 and named an isolated hydroxyl acid as ricinoleic
acid (Saalmüller, 1848). Ricinoleic acid (C18:1-OH), a
monounsaturated fatty acid, is the major component present in
castor oil (Omohu&Omale, 2017). It has 18-carbon chain and
one double bond at the 12th carbon with the molecular formula
C18H34O3 Table 1 (Román-Figueroaetal.,2016). Latter, studies
showed that castor oilseed contains several fatty acids, including
linoleic acid (C18:2), linolenic acid (C18:3), oleic acid (C18:1),
palmitic acid (C16:1), stearic acid (C18:0) among others Table1
(Omariet al., 2015; Omohu& Omale, 2017). e presence
of linolenic acid and oleic acid in vegetable oils are highly
benecial to human health and have been used to treat several
human sicknesses such as diabetes, skin cancer, renal disease,
heart attack, lupus, high blood pressure and high cholesterol
level (Ganesanetal.,2018). Oleic acid is resistant to oxidation
and can be used to improve the functions of antioxidants and
as anti-polymerization agents (Anjani, 2012). When combined
with antioxidants (e.g., tocopherols) it can be blended with other
oils to prevent oxidation. Linoleic, palmitic, stearic acids contain
some useful properties good for the skin, thus used in many
cosmetic industries (Ganesanetal.,2018). Esters of stearic acid:
glycol distearate, glycol stearate, and ethylene glycol are used to
manufacture cosmetic products or to increase the pearly eect
of shampoos (Gunstone&Hamilton, 2004). e occurrence
of these fatty acids in castor oil propose the nutritional and
industrial benet of this plant.
As with other oilseed crops, the type of cultivars, the geographical
origin of the crop, or the time of harvest inuence the relative
proportion of the fatty acids composition (Yusufetal.,2015).
Table 2 shows that the percentage of ricinoleic acid in castor
oilseed from India, China, Brazil, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Saudi
Arabia, Nigeria, and Tanzania were 87.3, 90.85, 88.2, 91.06,
94.59, 75.77, 86.96, and 87.8%, respectively. e ricinoleic acid
in castor oil from Pakistan was the highest with 94.59% whereas
Saudi Arabia was the least with 75.77% (Panhwaretal.,2016;
Sbihietal.,2018). Researchers have shown that ricinoleic acid
is present in the endosperm and cotyledon of immature castor
seed but not in developed male owers (Brownetal.,2012). Its oil
formation is speculated to form a positive correlation with oleic
acid (Möllers&Schierholt, 2002), and an increase of ricinoleate
content increases seed weight and size (Huang etal.,2015).
erefore, it can be said that selective breeding for high ricinoleic
oil content can lead to an increase in seed weight, size, and oleic
acid content in castor.
e variation in fatty acids component in Table 2 shows
a clear variation according to location such that certain fatty
acids present in some locations are absent in other locations.
Figure 3. Triglyceride composition of castor oil (Ndiayeetal.,2005).
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 2020 5/15 5
Forexample, linoleic and linolenic acid are present in castor
oilseed from some countries but were absent in Nigerian
and Saudia Arabian samples (Omohu& Omale, 2017;
Sbihietal.,2018). is may be related to the type of cultivar
and climatic or environmental factors. Moreover, the methods of
analysis adopted dier among the authors which could also be a
contributing factor. For instance, Souza Schneideretal. (2004)
used gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) for
fatty acids analysis whereas Omohu&Omale (2017) employed
gas chromatography (GC). GC-MS is more advantageous with
Tab le 1. Chemical structures of dierent fatty acids in castor oil.
Fatty acid
formular Type of fatty acid Number of bonds
and position Chemical structures
Ricinoleic C18H34O3Monounsaturated One, and at the 12th
Oleic C18H34O2Monounsaturated One, and at the 12th
Palmitic C16H32O2Saturated -
Stearic C18H36O2Saturated -
Linolenic C18H30O2Unsaturated ree, and at the 9th,
12th, and 15th carbon
Linoleic C18H32O2Polyunsaturated Two, and at the 9th
and 12th carbon
Tab le 2. % compositions of fatty acids in castor oil from various regions.
Fatty acid India (a) China (b) Brazil (c) Ethiopia (d) Pakistan (e) Saudi Arabia (f) Nigeria (g) Tanzania (h)
Ricinoleic (C18:1-OH) 87.3 90.85 88.2 91.06 94.59 75.77 86.96 87.8
Oleic (C18:1) 4.69 2.82 3.8 2.93 2.05 7.40 5.10 4.1
Linoleic (C18:2) 4.92 3.74 4.9 3.48 1.84 8.94 nd 4.3
Stearic (C18:0) 1.241 0.64 0.9 0.91 0.45 3.05 nd 1.4
Palmitic (C16:1) 1.016 0.72 1.4 1.08 0.31 2.77 0.56 2.4
Linolenic (C18:3) 0.63 - 0.3 0.316 nd nd nd nr
(a) (Ramanjaneyuluetal.,2013) (b) (Guoetal.,2018) c) (Souza Schneideretal.,2004) (d) (Beruketal.,2018) (e) (Panhwaretal.,2016) (f) (Sbihietal.,2018) (g) (Omohu&Omale,
2017) (h) (Omarietal.,2015). Key; nr-not reported, nd-not detected.
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 20206 6/15
Composition of castor oil
accurate results in that, it reveals certain compounds using both
mass spectrum and retention time compared to GC. e overall
content of saturated fatty acid in samples from Nigeria is low with
5.66% in castor and a maximum of 11.3% from Brazil (Souza
Schneideretal.,2004; Omohu&Omale, 2017).
Phytosterols are one of the minor bioactive compounds
that consist of unsaponiable fraction in castor oilseed
(Sbihiet al., 2018). e dominant phytosterol class up to
93.8% in castor was found to be 4-desmethylsterols and
β-sitosterol was the abundant compound present with
47.1% (Saidetal.,2016). Campesterol, stigmasterol, and Δ-5
avenasterol were the other 4-desmethylsterols identied.
Atotal phytosterol compound of 98.1mg/ 100g oil was also
found in castor oil (Velascoetal.,2015). Sbihietal. (2018)
examined castor sterols and concluded that β-sitosterol is the
main sterol component among detected sterols. e percentage
of cholesterol was as low as 0.09%, but (Lechneretal.,1999;
Velascoetal.,2015) in their studies detected no cholesterol
in their samples which could be due to varietal dierences.
Phytosterol content is inuenced by the area of planting,
cultivar, and temperature where an increase in temperature
resulted in higher levels (Aparicioetal.,2013). Although the
oilseed of castor is mostly utilized for industrial purposes,
phytosterols could be extracted from the raw oil rening
waste products. In this scenario, the production of castor
cultivars with high phytosterol component may contribute to
the valuable co-products of the chain length. Phytosterolsare
important in human diet owing to their decreasing serum
low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels (Velascoetal.,2015).
ey are greatly recommended as elements for a broad range
of fortied foods and, therefore a better understanding of the
individual phytosterols content in castor oil may contribute
to its potential use in the food industry.
One class of lipids that form lipid bilayers in the cell membrane
are phospholipids. A combination of phospholipids and tocopherols
may delay the onset of lipid oxidation (Chew&Nyam, 2019).
Information about phospholipids is useful in pharmaceutical
and food industries, particularly as emulsier.
e phospholipid composition of castor oilseed has long
been studied. Moreauetal. (1980) reported in castor that the
total polar lipids was less than 1%, with phosphatidylcholine,
phosphatidylinositol, and phosphatidylethanolamine as the major
components. Among them, phosphatidylcholine was the most
predominant at 30%. Donaldson also reported 2% of phospholipid
of 2-day-old castor oilseed and the values of phospholipid
classes were similar (Donaldson, 1976). Comparing to other
oilseed crops such as chufa nuts with 5.4%, the phospholipid
values reported in castor are low (Oderinde& Tairu, 1992).
Normally,dark-colored oils are a result of high proportions of
phospholipid. Hence the clear pale yellow color of castor oil may
be due to the low amount of phospholipid content in the oils.
Tocopherols and tocotrienols
Lipid-soluble antioxidants such as tocopherols in oilseed
scavenge free-radicals. Isomers of tocopherols (in vitro and in
vivo) have dierent antioxidant activity. In vitro antioxidant
activity of tocopherols prevents unsaturated fatty acids from
oxidation whereas in vivo tocopherols also known as Vitamin
E homologues inhibit inammatory damage, proliferative, and
cellular tissues from oxidation (Baümleretal.,2017). e four
naturally tocopherols (α-, β-, γ-, and δ-tocopherol) which vary
in their antioxidant properties and chemical structure have been
identied in many oilseeds including castor (Ribeiroetal.,2014).
Velascoetal. (2015) investigated the variability of castor seed
quality traits and found all the tocopherol isomers in the oil.
δ- and γ-tocopherol were also the main isomers present in the oil
(Saidetal.,2016; Velascoetal.,2005). α-tocopherols are noted
for their vitamin E homologues and δ- as well as γ-tocopherol
are highly eective as in vitro antioxidants (Ribeiroetal.,2014).
e long oil’s shelf life, anti-inammatory property, and oxidative
stability of castor oil at high temperature may be associated to the
presence of these tocopherols in the oils. Moreover, tocopherols
control the membrane functions by inhibiting oxidation of
body lipids, organelle membranes, and reduce individual risks
associated with contracting diseases such as Alzheimer’s, cancer,
and heart disease (Ramadan, 2019). erefore the presence
of tocopherols suggests that castor oilseed may be benecial
against these diseases.
Besides tocopherols, tocotrienols are also naturally antioxidants
in oils, belonging to the Vitamin E group, with α- and β- analogs.
Tocotrienols provide neuroprotective properties and prevent
cholesterols biosynthesis (Ramadan, 2019). Tocotrienols are
identied in their unsaturated form. e limited studies available
on the tocotrienols content of castor oil have revealed that α- and
β-tocotrienols are the main tocotrienols found in the oilseed
(Saidetal.,2016; Sbihietal.,2018).
Phenolic compounds
Phenolic compounds involve various groups of secondary
metabolites. is compound has either one or more hydroxyl groups
that bind directly to aromatic compounds (Rampadarathetal.,2014).
e major classes of nutritional phenolic compounds include
avonoids, phenolic acids, and tannins. Hydroxycinnamic acid
and hydroxybenzoic acid are the two main subgroups of phenolic
acids (Chew&Nyam, 2019). Hydroxybenzoic acids mostly have
the aromatic ring with C1-C6 structure and their by-product
are gallic, syringic, and vanillic acids (Boualemetal., 2017).
Withhydroxycinnamic acids, their derivatives include caeic,
ferulic, and p-coumaric acids with C3-C6 structure (Ramadan,
2019). e type and content of phenolic compounds dier among
dierent oils. Phenolic compounds contribute to the avor and
antioxidant activity in oils.
Chakravartula&Guttarla (2007) used methanol-ether
to extract phenolic acids from defatted castor oilseed.
econcentration of the total Gallic Acid Equivalent (GAE)
was unknown. HPLC-SPD chromatogram analysis detected
ve acids namely ferulic, syringic, p-coumaric, o-coumaric,
and cinnamic. e separation of dierent phenolic acids in
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 2020 7/15 7
castor depends on their polarities and structural similarities
(Chakravartula&Guttarla, 2007). e separation of ferulic and
p-coumaric acid was easily resolved compared to ferulicacid
and syringic, o-coumaric, p-coumaric, and cinnamic acids
(Chakravartula&Guttarla, 2007). Other phenolic acids such as
chlorogenic, gallic, gentistic, and protocatechuic have also been
identied in castor oilseed (Boualemetal.,2017). eextraction
of phenolic compounds in castor oil varies among the method
of extraction and the part of tissue analyzed. Recently, the total
phenolic content of castor root extracts by ethanol gave the
highest with 135.06mg GAE/g than 50.24mg GAE/g for ethyl
acetate extracts and 25.50mg GAE/g as the least by hexane
extract (Santosetal.,2018). rough hydrogen bonds, phenolic
compounds of hydroxyl moieties form stronger intermolecular
linkage with polar solvents (Rampadarathetal.,2014). Hexaneis
a non-polar extraction solvent whiles ethanol is polar solvent
therefore the highest GAE extract by ethanol can be associated
with its polarity which forms hydrogen bonds during phenolic
compound extract.
e evaluation of antimicrobial and phytochemical activity
in castor oil revealed that avonoid, cyanogenic glycoside,
saponin, oxalate, phytate, alkaloid, and tannin were present in
the ascending order (Momohetal.,2012). Udegbunametal.
(2015) in their studies also detected these biologically active
chemical compounds in castor oilseed during screening
of in  vitro antimicrobial activity among seven bacteria.
epresence of avonoids indicates antimicrobial, antioxidant,
anti-inammatory as well as other medicinal properties in plants
(Gutiérrez-Grijalvaet al.,2017). Tannin is toxic to bacteria,
fungi, and yeast and has some antibacterial and antiviral activity
(Udegbunametal.,2015). eexistence of these phytochemical
compounds in castor oil might be responsible for the antimicrobial
activity in the oil. Further studies however on their properties
are required to enhance its use by pharmaceutical industries as
a value-added product for production of antibiotics in addition
to its anti-inammatory and purgative benet.
Carotenoids in oils act as an antioxidant to scavenge free
radicals and may contribute to fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin
A activity. e combination of β-carotene and tocopherols in oils
may synergistically provide antioxidant eect, while β-carotene
alone can prevent lipid oxidation (Chew&Nyam, 2019).
Carotenoids content found in castor oil ranged from
12.34-39.47mg/kg β-carotene oil (Kadrietal.,2011). In another
study, the carotenoids identied in castor oil was 2.05mg/kg oil
(Atta&Mohamed, 2017). Comparing with other vegetable oils,
the carotenoid content of castor oil is higher than soybean with
0.37mg/kg oil and saower at 1.21mg/kg oil (Atta&Mohamed,
2017). Mostly, at higher temperature carotenoid content easily
degrade, and this might contribute to the low carotenoid in the oils.
In addition, carotenoids have been found to correlate with oils
color which is one fundamental component to access oil quality
(Chew&Nyam, 2019). On determining the color of castor oil
using Lovibond tintometer, it gave the red color 2.1 at 35 yellow
(Atta&Mohamed, 2017). e pale yellow color of castor oil
signies the presence of the yellow pigment, carotenoids. is
pigment helps absorb ultraviolet radiations (Jemnietal.,2019).
1.4 Physicochemical properties of castor oilseed
roughout literature, the density and refractive index
of castor oilseed at 28ºC are 961 kg/m3 and 1.476 respectively
(Omarietal.,2015; Torrentes-Espinozaetal.,2017). Castor oil
has a viscosity of 1.86 St/dPas at 30°C (Yusufetal.,2015) and
9.3-10 St/dPas at 25°C (Omarietal.,2015). e viscous nature
of castor oil makes it appropriate for diesel fuel and coating
(Naiketal.,2018). e castor oil quality can be determined by the
acid, p-anisidine, iodine, saponication, and thiobarbituric acid.
Iodine value
e iodine value quanties the unsaturation level of fats
or oils and it is expressed in grams of iodine. A higher iodine
value implies a higher level of unsaturation and lower value also
indicates a low unsaturation level. In castor oilseed, the average
range of iodine value is 83-93g I2/100g oil (Omotehinseetal.,2019;
Yusufetal.,2015). is value indicates that the amount of
iodine that will be present in the unsaturated acids is low.
Castor oil can be regarded as a non-drying oil since the value
is less than 100, hence making it useful for hydraulic brake
uids and lubricants. e iodine value sometimes diers among
varieties. Zanzibarcastor seeds (ZCOH and ZCOE) obtained
from the same variety showed no signicant dierence in their
iodine value when planted in the same area in Saudi Arabia
(Sbihietal.,2018). Variation did occur among Impala castor
seeds obtained from the same variety (ICOH and ICOE) when
they were cultivated in the same area which was attributed to
their low PUFA content (Sbihietal.,2018).
Acid value
e acid value determines the concentration of free fatty
acids and is expressed as mg KOH/g oil. Acid value is one of the
paramount indicators of oil quality. Vegetable oil with high acid
content mostly has poor oil quality and during rening process,
much oil is lost (Omarietal.,2015; Sbihietal.,2018). erefore,
low acid value is a good indicator of vegetable oil and could be
valuable for rening process. A number of reported acid values
in castor oil ranges from 0.14 to 1.97mg/g oil (Omarietal.,2015;
Panhwaretal.,2016; Perdomoetal.,2013; Yusufetal.,2015).
Castor oilseeds planted in Nigeria had high acid values of 14.80
and 15.57mg/g oil (Nangbeset al.,2013; Omohu&Omale,
2017), but this could be associated to the poor handling and
processing of the seed. According to American Society for testing
and material (ASTM), the accepted acid value of vegetable oils
should not exceed 2 (Yusufetal.,2015). Omarietal.,(2015)
suggested that the high acid value of castor oil may be due to the
delay in seed extraction which inuenced the lipase enzyme to
hydrolyze the triglycerides into free fatty acid. High acid value
of 9.12mg/g oil in chufa nuts was attributable to the splitting
fat enzyme in the tuber that was found in low concentration
which gradually hydrolyzed amygdalin (Aremuet al.,2016).
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 20208 8/15
Composition of castor oil
Amygdalin is a glycoside that occurs naturally in plants to forms
ester-linked bonds with fatty acids. erefore, the occurrence
of the enzyme might have gradually increase to hydrolytic
oxidation as a result of the release of free fatty acids. In addition,
the acid value of vegetable oils can be inuenced by the type
of solvent used in extraction. Aer analyzing the acid value in
castor oil by using two dierent solvents, it was concluded that
extraction by hexane gave good and quality oils compared to
ethanol extraction (Sbihietal.,2018).
Anisidine value
Anisidine value (AnV) is a reliable and useful test that measures
secondary oxidation products and reveals valuable information on
compounds that are more stable and non-volatile during frying
process (Schramm&McGrath, 2013). It has been proposed that
for oils to be classied as quality oil, its AnV should not be above
two (Schramm&McGrath, 2013). e AnV of castor oilseed
was identied to be 1.66meq/kg (Sedeeketal.,2012). is value
is less compared to that reported in cottonseed oil and jojoba
with 4.450 and 2.03meq/kg, respectively (Sedeeketal.,2012),
suggesting that these oils are highly susceptible to oxidation than
castor oil. Also, a negative AnV was observed (Yeboahetal.,2012).
In AnV test, it is very rare for negative numbers to be obtained
and, therefore this might be as a result of interference of water in
reagents and samples from the artefact during the test process.
A deep-frying study revealed that the AnV and stability of oil
castor was better compared to the other oils under the study
iobarbituric acid
Most oen than not, anisidine and acid values are used to
check the quality of vegetable oils. iobarbituric acid (TBA) is
also another test that is widely used to access secondary oxidation
products of oils. It measures the degree of malondialdehyde
(MDA) and other related aldehyde compounds formed during
the oxidation of oils (Sedeeket al.,2012). e TBA value of
castor oil in deep frying was 0.58mmol/kg which was lower
than shea butter 4.39mmol/kg and soybean oil 11.0mmol/kg
(Ikyaetal.,2013; Sedeeketal.,2012). e low TBA value of castor
signies that the oil has longer keeping quality than shea butter
and soybean oil assuming that TBA is an indicator of the extent
in lipids. It was revealed that variation in peroxide, acid, iodine,
and TBA values were well regulated and declined when castor/
jojoba oil mixtures was blended with cottonseed oil at ratios of
9:1 and 8:2 in a deep frying system (Sedeeketal.,2012). In the
same frying study, castor and jojoba oil improved the stability of
cottonseed oil which was attributable to the natural antioxidants
and fatty acid composition in these oils (Sedeeketal.,2012).
Saponication value
One chemical property used to characterize castor oil
is the saponication value which measures the molecular
weight of the triglyceride. Low saponication value implies
high molecular weight and high saponication value indicates
low molecularweight of the triglyceride (Omarietal.,2015).
eaverage range of saponication value reported in castor
oilseed is 165.50 to 187mg KOH/g oil (Omariet al., 2015).
e planting area has been found to be a major factor that
inuences the saponication value in oilseeds. Dierence
among saponication values grown in six dierent regions were
found in castor. e highest value was recorded in Morogoro
with 187.46mg KOH/g whereas Kagera had the lowest with
165.50mg KOH/g (Omarietal., 2015). Low saponication
value in oil samples proposes their non-suitability for industrial
use, hence the high saponication value of castor oil conrms
its useful application for the manufacture of soaps and other
cosmetic products.
1.5 Composition and physicochemical properties of castor
oilseed compared with other vegetable oils
Castor oil has a bland taste and amber-color which is similar
to that of virgin sunower oil (Arshad&Amjad, 2012; Ogunniyi,
2006). Comparative studies of the fatty acids composition of
castor oilseed with some vegetable oils are presented in Table3.
Fromthe table, it can be observed that the range of saturated
fatty acid (SFA) composition of castor oil is closely related to
sunower as indicated by their percentages and lower than
palm kernel. Its high composition of monounsaturated fatty
acid (MUFA) is similar to both olive oil and macadamia nut oil.
Small amounts of PUFA in oils account for their high stability
as reported in palm kernel oil, macadamia nut, and olive oil
(Gargetal.,2007; Sinanoglouetal.,2014). erefore, the low
percentage of PUFA in castor oil may also contribute to its
stability. Table 3 also indicates that the average total unsaturated
fatty acid of castor is higher than barbados nut, palm kernel,
pistachio, and macadamia nut, and falls within the range of
rapeseed, olive, and sunower (Sauderetal.,2014; Tavakolipour,
2015). From these observation, it can be said that the fatty acid
prole of castor oil share similarities with macadamia nut, palm
kernel, olive, and sunower. However, its unsaturated fatty acid;
ricinoleic acid is unique among all other vegetable oils, making
it attractive for a wide spectrum of applications.
e composition of castor oilseed falls in line with oils
that are nutritious and provides stability for a wide range of
application. Such oils are mostly suitable for frying and industrial
use because of their stability. rough gene slicing, Liu and
colleagues developed cottonseed cultivar that gave high UFA
and low SFA (Liuetal.,2002). It was believed that the oil gave
higher stability compare to high oleic rapeseed or soybean oils.
Based on the cultivar of castor oilseed and probably modication
of the chemical structures, its oil can form part of oils that are
commercially used for frying applications.
A number of studies have evaluated the oxidative stabilities
of castor oil by using Rancimat test. is test measures the
induction period from the point of oxidative rancidity in the oil
(Saidetal.,2016). e oxidation rate of castor oil starts gradually
until it gets to the peak. e abrupt rise indicates the nal
induction period. e oxidative stabilities of castor oil with other
oils have been studied. Rancimat test analysis at 100°C revealed
that the induction period of castor, cottonseed, and jojoba oil
were 135.2, 52.9, and 9.97h respectively (Sedeeketal.,2012).
Longer induction period implies higher stability, hence the
longer period of castor oil signies higher oxidative stability
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 2020 9/15 9
compared to cottonseed and jojoba oil. In another study, the
oxidative stability of castor oil was found to be higher than
argan, nigella, olive, and sesame oils with an induction period of
35.5h at 110°C (Saidetal.,2016). Studies have conrmed that
oxidative stability oils assessed by Rancimat test correlate with
antioxidant systems (Abdallahetal.,2015; Sedeeketal.,2012).
erefore the stability of castor oil to oxidation could also be
related to its high antioxidant properties such as tocopherols
and probably the presence of ricinoleic acid which does not
easily oxidize.
e range of unsaponiable matter of cottonseed, coconut,
and olive oils are 0.4-1.1, 0.5, and 0.7-1.4%, respectively
and these values are quite similar to castor oil which is 0.7%
(Benitez-Sánchezetal., 2003; Ramos-Escuderoetal., 2015;
Yusufetal.,2015). Extensive studies have been conducted on
the unsaponiable fraction of these oils in that alcoholic esters,
hydrocarbons, triterpene alcohols, and waxes have been identied
(Oderinde&Tairu, 1992). erefore, more studies are required
in castor oil particularly on the various lipids, since these helps
to identify the source of the lipids (Liuetal.,2002).
Phytosterols constitute major fraction of unsaponiable
matter in many oils. ey are benecial because of their
antioxidant activity and positive inuence on human health
(Abdallahetal.,2015). e determination of the sterol prole
and total sterol content is a reliable tool to evaluate authenticity
of oils (Abdallahetal.,2015). e phytosterols components of
the various vegetable oils have been shown in Table 4. e overall
phytosterol content (1520.4-2603mg/100g) in castor oilseed
is similar to the range of olive oil (1800-2300mg/100g), and
higher than walnuts (1085.60- 1573.63mg/100g) and hazelnuts
(1458-1956mg/100g) (Said et al.,2016; Sbihiet al.,2018).
erelative content of total phytosterol in cottonseed, rapeseed,
sesame, and sunower is higher than castor oilseed. e major
phytosterol content found in castor oil is β‐sitosterol with an
average value of 1040.8-1181mg/100g. is value is lower than
all the reported β‐sitosterol in this study. Aer β‐sitosterol,
the most predominant phytosterol in castor is stigmasterol
followed by δ5-Avenasterol and campesterol. e percentage of
these values are higher than the other oils except cottonseed,
rapeseed, and sesame.
e contents of various isomers of tocopherol and tocotrienols
in dierent vegetable oils are presented in Table 5. e most
dominant tocopherol component in castor oilseed is δ and γ and
the lowest is β and α. e mean value of δ and γ are 43.1-96.62mg/g
and 30.89-52.7mg/g, respectively in castor oilseed making up a
total of 73.99-149.32mg/g (Saidetal.,2016; Sbihietal.,2018).
ese values are higher than those reported in olive, hazelnut,
and sunower as indicated in Table 5. High antioxidant and
oxidative stability in oils such as cactus is associated to its higher
δ and γ-tocopherol (Edem, 2002). In sunower, the presence
of tocopherol has been reported to protect the PUFA from
oxidation (Fisketal.,2006). According to Sattleretal. (2003),
tocopherol is related with oil bodies to enhance the antioxidant
protection for the seed. As such, the high amount of tocopherol
in castor oil oer this same benet. In addition to tocopherols,
tocotrienols have several biological activities and could serve
as antiosteoporotic agent (Edem, 2002). e major tocotrienols
found in castor oilseed is β-tocotrienols, nevertheless, this value
is extremely lower compared to palm kernel oil. Generally, it can
be said that the vitamin E content in castor oilseed is lower than
all the oils shown in Table 5. However, its values corresponds to
Tab le 3. Fatty acid proles of castor oilseed with other oils.
Oil Botanical name % S FA % MUFA % PUFA % Total UFA
(MUFA+PUFA) References
Castor Ricinus
communis 5.2-10.95 78.29-83.35 9.54-11.41 87.83-94.76 (Sbihietal.,2018;
Barbados nut Jatropha curcas 21.6-26.3 45.2-45.4 32.2-33.0 77.4-78.4 (Akbaretal.,2009; Akintayo,
2004; Rahmanetal.,2014)
Palm kernel Elaeis guineensis 52.1-85.01 14.6-38.6 2.4-11.6 17.0-50.2 (Asnaasharietal.,2015; Edem,
2002; Nor Hayatietal.,2009)
Sunower Helianthus
annuus 8.8-11.3 21.1-30.0 59.0-70.0 80.1-100 (Chongetal.,2015; Edem, 2002;
Soyabean Glycine max 10.40-18.70 17.70-26.10 55.30-66.60 73.0-92.7 (Edem, 2002; Knothe, 2002; Nor
Rapeseed Brassica napus 7.2-8.6 58.5-68.0 24.7-33.9 83.2-101.9 (Lewinskaetal.,2015;
Olive Olea europaea 13.2-16.0 73.0-83.0 5.1-13.0 78.1-96.0 (Gharbietal.,2015; Ramos-
Hazelnut Corylus avellana 6.30-16.7 55.0-60.1 14.8-33.4 69.8-93.5
Pistachio Pistacia atlantica 9.3-28.0 8.56-49.57 6.42-36.62 14.98-86.19 (Sauderetal.,2014; Tavakolipour,
Macadamia nut Macadamia
tetraphylla 13.2-21.77 75.69-82.4 2.2-4.7 77.89-87.1 (Gargetal.,2007;
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 202010 10/15
Composition of castor oil
oils with high amount of Vitamin E rich in PUFA. e relatively
proportion of tocopherols and tocotrienols in castor oilseed
may contribute to the study of their relative in vivo and in vitro
antioxidant eects.
e reported value of polyphenol content in castor oilseed
was 632.33µg GAE/g and this amount was higher than phenolic
content of Jatropha 408.00µg GAE/g (Rampadarathetal.,2014).
Compared to other vegetable oils, it is relatively higher than the
total amount of coconut (84µg GAE/g), corn (0.1µg GAE/g),
olive (26.5µg GAE/g), sunower (0.4µg GAE/g), and soybean oil
with 8µg GAE/g (Marfiletal.,2011; Nevin&Rajamohan, 2006).
e phospholipid content (1-2%) in castor oilseed falls within
the range of that known in soybean (1.1-1.9%) and sunower oil
with 1.2% (Moreauetal.,1980; Subra-Paternaultetal.,2015).
eprimary phospholipids mentioned in castor oilseed are similar
to those in soybean and sunower oil; phosphatidylcholines,
Tab le 4. Phytosterols constituent in vegetable oil (mg/100g).
Oil β-Sitosterol Stigmasterol Campesterol Cholesterol δ5-Avenasterol δ7-Avenasterol δ7-Stigmasterol Tot al
phytosterol References
Castor 1040.8-1181 406.6-554.10 249.20-273.20 2.18-4.41 357.9-520.20 8.83-22.32 4.41-49.57 1520.4-2603 (Saidetal.,2016;
Olive 1545-1851 16-26 59-62 0.11-0.29 158-214 8-14 1-4 1800-2300 (Benitez-
walnuts 974.09-1494.54 2.98-5.78 45.98-88.02 4.05- 6.33 40.84-83.89 1.00-2.60 1.88- 8.60 1085.60-
1573.63 (Abdallahetal.,2015)
Hazelnut 1052-1666 10-18 44-87 nd 41-65 6-11 7-17 1458-1956
Rapeseed 1489-3340 9-38 1145-2655 19-65 101-382 1.0 nr 3267-7213 (Madawalaetal.,2012;
Sunower 950-3000 200-400 140-450 - nd-200 50-250 180-500 2440-4550
Soybean 990-2210 290-690 350-830 - 40-150 20-170 30-90 1840-4090
Cottonseed 2220-5310 30-130 220-670 - 70-380 50-160 Nd-90 2690-6430
Sesame 2730-14251 330-854 1-7 - 404-1542 44-1281 13-1886 4506-18957
Keys; nr-not reported, nd-not detected.
Tab le 5. Vitamin E component of dierent oils.
Oil Tocopherols Tocotrienols References
α-(µg) β-(µg) γ-(µg) δ-(µg) α-(µg) β-(µg)
Castor 0.57-2.8 0.35-1.3 30.89-52.7 43.1-96.62 0.24-0.42 0.47-0.61 (Saidetal.,2016; Sbihietal.,2018)
Rapeseed 153-256 nd 396-474 9.8-19 0.4 - (Madawalaetal.,2012;
Argan 57-90 2.5 463-773 71-75 nd nd (Edem, 2002)
Olive 33-219 0.6-10.2 0.1-11.9 0.7-22 nd-3.1 nd-0.7 (Benitez-Sánchezetal.,2003;
Edem, 2002)
Sunower 92.7-368 4.64-21.7 0.53-19.3 0.3-0.93 0.11-1.1 - (Chongetal.,2015;
Fisketal.,2006; Hammond, 1998)
Palm kernel 36.2-44 58.3-248 3.1-257 53.4 1088.8 796.8 (Asnaasharietal.,2015;
Hammond, 1998)
Hazelnut 87-336.40 2-28 5-47 0.3-4.5 nd-1.4 nd-1.1
Walnuts 4.28- 12.81 0.57- 3.24 162- 358 16.76- 44.73 (Abdallahetal.,2015)
Keys; nd-not detected.
Food Sci. Technol, Campinas, Ahead of Print, 2020 11/15 11
phosphatidylethanolamines, and phosphatidylinositols
(Benitez-Sánchezetal.,2003; Fisketal.,2006).
In a deep frying study using castor, cottonseed, and jojoba,
the viscosity of these oils increased gradually with time.
Blendingof castor and jojoba oil mixture at a ratio of 9:1 did not
inuence the viscosity of cottonseed oil. But an increase occurred
aer blending castor oil at a ratio of 8:2 (Sedeeketal.,2012).
Duringfrying, acceleration in viscosity is a normal phenomenon
because of the formation of high molecular weight polymers.
esepolymers that are produced are more of oxygen which
leads to the deterioration of oil, hence increasing the viscosity
even more (Yaghmuretal.,2001). ough under actual industrial
frying conditions, the polymers formed are low in oxygen and
the oxygen content of oil is also low, the deterioration process
becomes fast once the antioxidants produce are all used up.
In this case, more viscous oils imply oils with a higher level of
deterioration. In addition, changes in peroxide and acid values,
as well as total polar compounds and TBA was observed when
castor oil blended with cottonseed and jojoba oil in the deep
frying system (Sedeeketal.,2012). During deep frying study,
the acid value of argan, castor, cottonseed, and jojoba oil was
found to be 0.4, 1.848, 1.026 and 1.568 units, respectively
(Sedeeketal.,2012; Yaghmuretal.,2001). ough the increase
in argan oil is very small, it still falls within the range expected
during deep frying. e sole use of peroxide value for testing
oxidative deterioration of oils during frying is not recommended
due to the reason being that peroxide easily gets decompose at
high temperatures above 170°C and new peroxides are formed
during cooling (Ikyaetal.,2013).
One accepted method for assessing total oil alteration/
rancidity is by the determination of total polar compounds
(TPC) (Ghobadietal., 2018). is is because during frying
processes polar compounds are formed from the decomposition
of fatty acids. For cooking oils, the limit range for rejecting or
replacing oils could be determined if the TPC is within 20 to
27% (Ghobadietal.,2018). e acceptable range for fresh oils
lies between 0.4 to 6.4%. In the same frying study involving
castor, the initial TPC of castor was 3.264 and this was lower
than cottonseed 7.518 and jojoba oil 4.942. Aer 12h of frying,
these values rose to 32.35, 83.68, and 32.35 for castor, cottonseed,
and jojoba oil, respectively (Sedeeketal., 2012). is shows
that during drying process, increasing time negatively aects
the quality of oils, therefore the optimal range (time) should be
known to avoid oil deterioration.
2 Conclusion and prospects
As it has been reviewed here, castor oilseed has high
percentage of monounsaturated fatty acid and shares higher
similarities of with other vegetable oils. e fatty acids prole and
triglycerides demonstrate that ricinoleic acid and triricinolein are
the predominant components in the oil. Bioactive compounds
including polyphenols, phytosterols, and tocopherols present
in castor oilseed pose its anti-inammatory and antioxidant
properties against oxidation and these may prolong the oil shelf
life. e low acid value also accounts for castor oil stability.
Further studies, however on the composition and
physicochemical properties are still required. e low percentage
of total phospholipid content requires further study to enhance
its utilization as emulsier in dierent sectors. e limited
studies on the unsaponiable matter and its potential use for
frying highlight the need for comprehensive research into this
unique seed oil. Further studies on the dierent methods of
extracting castor oil that is eco-friendly with maximal yields is
required. Finally, breeding of cultivars that can be grown under
challenging climatic conditions with higher yields and good oil
quality should be taken into future consideration.
We are thankful to Ms. Adzigbli Linda, Asiamah Collins and
all anonymous reviewers for making this manuscript a better
one. We are thankful to the researchers whose contributions
have been cited in this review paper, which have helped us to
prepare a constructive review. Moreover, we apologize to those
authors whose admirable work could not be cited due to space
limitations. is study was funded by National Natural Science
foundation of China (31271759); Guangdong provincial science
and technology projects (2013b060400024, 2014a020208116,
and 2016a020208015) (China); program for scientic research
start-up funds of Guangdong Ocean University (Grant number,
521202290); project of enhancing school with innovation of
Guangdong Ocean University, GDOU 2013050206 (China).
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... Sometimes called castor beans, they are not real beans. Ricinus communis, which belongs to the family Euphorbiaceae, has the potential to grow in various geographic regions [14]. Therefore, it is used in multiple fields such as agriculture, pharmaceuticals, and industry. ...
... Therefore, it is used in multiple fields such as agriculture, pharmaceuticals, and industry. Castor oil products include: Ointments, nylons, lacquers, lubricants for aircraft engines, hydraulic fluids, dyes, detergents, plastics, artificial leathers, cosmetics, perfumes [14]. Castor oil contains the monounsaturated hydroxy fatty acid ricinoleic acid as the main component of its fatty acid profile. ...
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Background: Medicinal plant contain phytochemicals which have inhibitory effects on plant pathogens. Weeds compete with the main crops and reduce the growth, yield, and quality of agricultural products to some extent. One of the most common methods of reducing weed damage is the use of chemical herbicides. Due to the side effects that chemical herbicides on human health and the environment, there is a need to replace biocompatible and low-risk herbicides. Objective: In this study, the allelopathic properties of the Ferula assa-foetida L. essential oil and castor oil (Ricinus communis L.) have been investigated as a botanical herbicide to prevent germination of redroot pigweed seeds (Amaranthus retroflexus L.). Methods: In this regard, an herbal formulation based on Ferula assa-foetida essential oil and castor oil was prepared and its effect on the germination of redroot pigweed seeds was studies in laboratory conditions. The chemical composition of the herbal formulation was analyzed by GC/MS. Results: The results showed that this herbal formulation in concentration 0.75 % and 1 % inhibits the germination of weed seeds about 70 %. The main constituents of Ferula assa-foetida and Ricinus communis were (E)-1-propenyl sec-butyl disulfide (43.9 %) and ricinoleic acid methyl ester (58.1 %), respectively. Conclusion: It was found that the studied botanical formulation has herbicidal properties. Therefore, more research is needed to achieve promising results in order to replace chemical herbicides with botanical herbicides.
... Storing damaged seeds can trigger high loss in quality of castor oil [31,32]. This, eventually, leads to high production costs that negatively affect the economic sustainability of the whole supply chain [33]. Interestingly, the ratio of unprocessed seeds and damaged seeds is affected by the header. ...
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Castor bean (Ricinus communis L.) is a promising industrial crop suitable for cultivation in marginal conditions in the Mediterranean area, but the mechanical harvesting of the seeds is still usually performed manually. In this manuscript, the authors present a preliminary test to assess the effectiveness of equipping a combine harvester with a sunflower header to mechanically harvest castor beans. Machinery performance, seed loss from impact (ISL) and cleaning systems (CSL), and seed cleaning were evaluated and compared with the results obtained from the same combine harvester equipped with a cereal header. According to the results, no statistically significant difference in CSL was found. Values ranged from 162. 41 kg dry matter (DM) ha−1 in the cereal header to 145.56 kg DM ha−1 in the sunflower header, corresponding, respectively, to 8% w/w and 7% w/w of the potential seed yield (PSY). Using the sunflower header significantly lowered ISL (158.16 kg DM ha−1, i.e., 8% w/w of PSY) in comparison with the cereal header (282.02 kg DM ha−1, i.e., 14% w/w of PSY). This suggests more gentle cutting and conveying capability of the sunflower header to harvest the plants without losing capsules. On the other hand, the use of different headers did not significantly affect the cleaning of the seeds which averaged at 20% of the total seeds collected in both cases. In conclusion, the study highlights that a conventional combine harvester equipped with a sunflower header could be the first step towards the development of a fully mechanized harvest phase in castor beans which triggers lower seed loss and does not negatively affect the cleaning capacity of the combine harvester. Further studies are also encouraged to confirm these findings in other hybrids.
... The plant possess high oil content (45%-55%) relative to other plants in the country and got a great attention by stakeholders (22) (Table 1). Biodiesel should be investigated for some important parameters to ensure its quality before it is used in different kinds of fuel machineries (36). Biodiesel density (the measure of the degree of combustion and atomization), viscosity (the property to resist the relative movement tendency), flash point (the minimum temperature at which the fuel will ignite), acid value (to quantify the acid moieties in the biodiesel), iodine value (the measure of the total unsaturation of fatty acids), water content and cetane number (the measure of ignition quality of biodiesel) are some substantial parameters of biodiesel that should be taken in to consideration before application (37-42). ...
... They also pointed to post-production waste in the production of cosmetics and fertilizers [84]. The content of tocopherols in castor oil is about 39.5 mg/100 g [85], sterols 152-247 mg/100 g [86], phenols 40-66 mg/100 g, and carotenoids 1.2-4 mg/100 g [87]. ...
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Consumer’s awareness of the health-promoting aspects of food and their search for products with high nutritional value is driving increased interest in niche oils. Such oils are produced on a small scale due to limited access to raw material and its low oil content. The aim of this multi-criteria analysis was to position niche oils. Data for the study were collected based on a literature review regarding twenty-three niche oils available on the European Union market. Analysis of quality parameters, key production factors, waste reusability, and average annual consumption volume in 2015–2020 was performed. Based on the research, it was concluded that linseed (flaxseed) oil, hemp oil, mustard oil, raspberry seed oil, and sesame oil should be of the most interest to consumers. They are characterized by the highest content of tocopherols, sterols, polyphenols, and carotenoids, a favorable ratio of mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids, and pro-ecological and sustainable production technology. Based on the results of the study, the need for empirical research was identified, the key to filling the knowledge gaps in the area of edible niche oils.
The high consumption of fossil fuels has significant environmental implications. An alternative to reduce the use of fossil fuels and develop ecological and economic processes is the bio-refinery approach. In the present study, the authors present the production of biodiesel from castor plants through a biorefinery approach. The process includes sub-processes associated with the integral use of castor plants, such as biodiesel production, oil extraction, fertilizer, and solid biomass production. Economic analyses show that producing only biodiesel is not feasible, but economic indicators (NPV, IRR, and profitability index) show it is much more feasible to establish businesses for the valorization of products and subproducts of castor plants, such as biomass densification. The internal rate return for the second scenario (E2) was 568%, whereas, for the first scenario (E1), it was not possible to obtain a return on investment.
Castor oil is a vegetable product extracted from Ricinus communis L (castor seed), which is primarily considered an important commercial value for the manufacturing of soaps, lubricants, coatings, etc. It is rich in hydroxylated fatty acids (ricinoleic acid, 89-92%) and is widely used in the cosmetic, pharmaceutical, oleochemical, and agricultural industries. This oil has also been confirmed as a bactericidal, anti-inflammatory, and antiherpetic agents, due to the ricinoleic acid having functional groups, such as -COOH, -OH, and -C=C-. Furthermore, it is converted into various acid derivative compounds with several applications. Therefore, this article reviewed some reaction stages to the preparation of ricinoleic acid from castor oil. Several methods or reaction pathways were employed in the preparation procedure, such as the Twitchell and Colgate-Emery processes, as well as the alkaline catalyzed, transesterification with methyl ricinoleic, and lipase-catalyzed hydrolysis, respectively. Although each of these preparation methods has advantages and disadvantages, the most effective technique was the hydrolysis through the use of the enzyme lipozyme TL IM. Besides being a green method, the conversion rate in the hydrolysis process was 96.2 ± 1.5.
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Mosquitoes like Culex quinquefasciatus are the primary vector that transmits many causes of diseases such as filariasis, Japanese encephalitis, and West Nile virus, in many countries around the world. The development in the scientific fields, such as nanotechnology, leads to use this technique in control programs of insects including mosquitoes through the use of green synthesis of nanoemulsions based on plant products such as castor oil. Castor oil nanoemulsion was formulated in various ratios comprising of castor oil, ethanol, tween 80, and deionized water by ultrasonication. Thermodynamic assay improved that the formula of (10 ml) of castor oil, ethanol (5ml), tween 80 (14 ml) and deionized water (71ml) was more stable than other formulas. The formulated castor oil nanoemulsion was characterized by transmitting electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering. Nanoemulsion droplets were spherical in shape and found to have a Z-average diameter of 93 nm. A concentration of castor oil nanoemulsion (250, 350, 450, and 550 ppm) was tested as larvicidal agents and bulk emulsion (1000, 1500, 2000, and 2500 ppm) was tested also and compared against the fourth instar larvae. Our nanoemulsion showed higher activity when compared to bulk emulsion. LC50 for castor oil nanoemulsion and castor bulk emulsion were found to be 268.21 and 409.37ppm after 72 h, respectively. The biochemical assays were carried out to examine the effect of castor oil nanoemulsion on biochemical characteristics of larvae. The treated larval homogenate showed inhibition in the activity of acetylcholinesterase.
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This work compared the nutritional and phytochemical compositions, antioxidant capacities of fermented castor oil and soursop seeds. The seeds of castor oil and soursop were fermented traditionally and standard methods were applied for the determination of the phytochemical, proximate, vitamins, minerals and in vitro antioxidant activity. The phytochemical compositions showed total phenols (11.60±1.52 and 22.17±0.64 mgGAE/100g), flavonoids (3.60±0.11 and 3.37±0.07 mgCE/100g), tannins (4.77±0.13 and 1.33±0.40 mg/100g), alkaloids (0.30±0.03% and not detected), oxalate (0.54±0.00 and 0.68±0.20 mg/g), phytate (0.33±0.02 and 0.09±0.01%) and saponin (0.54±0.62% and not detected) for fermented castor oil andsoursop seeds respectively. Proximate compositions showed crude fibre (0.73±0.11 and 7.25±0.35%), ash (2.29±0.22 and 1.64±0.12%), lipid (17.80±1.13 and 11.55±0.77%), moisture (43.29±0.72 and 38.60±1.81%), carbohydrate (31.25±2.28, 23.84±1.12%) and crude protein (16.75±1.41 and 5.03±0.31%) for fermented castor oil and soursop seeds respectively. The vitamin analysis revealed vitamins A (6.37±0.00 and 16.56±0.00 mg/g), B1 (3.89±0.00 and 9.44±0.43µg/g), C (5.43±0.31 and 2.39±0.31mg/g), E (5.39±0.04 and 0.52±0.04 mg/g) and folic acid (31.22±1.60 and 42.33±1.60µg/g). The mineral composition showed Ca (180.00±2.52 and 2.72±0.36mg/kg), K (281.63±0.40 and 2.95±0.09mg/kg), P (214.80±6.15 and 214.39±3.80mg/kg) and Zn (0.87±0.06 and 214.39±3.80mg/kg) respectively. The fermented castor oil and soursop seeds significantly (p<0.05) increase inhibition of lipid peroxidation and also had a high reducing power capacity. The result indicated that fermented soursop seeds can serve as a substitute for fermented castor oil seeds especially for individuals with vitamins deficiency.
Castor (Ricinus communis L.) is an important tropical oilseed crop whose oil has versatile, practical value, especially in industries. The present study aimed to estimate the nature and magnitude of variability in the castor germplasm concerning yield and its component traits and physico-biochemical characters. Seed yield per plant and oil content ranged from 80.90 g (ICS-165) to 248.30 g (RG-3216), and 34.7% (ICS-172) to 58.7% (JI-277), respectively. The iodine value of oil ranged from 76.36 (JI-370) to 89.84 (P2-135) with an average value of 83.02. The mean saponification value of oil 182.24. The genotypic and phenotypic coefficients of variation were high for acid value, capsules on the main raceme, seed yield per plant, and total length of the main raceme. A positive association of porosity, average unit volume, and total length of the main raceme with seed yield per plant show that these characters are directly attributed to the improvement of seed yield. Manhattan distances grouped the 30 genotypes into three clusters. Genetic diversity was elucidated using SSR and SRAP markers. SRAP marker produced higher mean number of total bands (5.71), polymorphic bands (4.57), percentage polymorphism (83.10%), PIC (1.72), RP (5.90), mean RP (1.02), MR (5.71), EMR (4.57) and MI (1.44) values when compared to SSR (2.89, 2.11, 79.63%, 0.61, 1.90, 0.72, 2.89, 2.11 and 0.49, respectively) marker. The highest genetic distance (0.77) was between 48-1 and JI-370, which indicates that these genotypes can be used in biparental mating schemes, QTL map development, and hybridization programmes to increase oil content and quality for industrial purposes.
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Researchers have shown some concern over the use of castor seeds in the preparation of local food condiment and the suitability of the oil quality in diverse industrial applications. In Nigeria currently, there appears to be little effort on the commercial cultivation and extraction of castor seed oil to harness the economic potential inherent in the plant. This study seeks to evaluate the physicochemical characteristics of castor seed oil keeping in view the versatile applications of the oil in cosmetic, pharmaceutical, paints, varnishes, lubricants and recently as renewable source. The oil from castor seed obtained from Edo State, Nigeria was extracted using a mechanically cold pressed method. The yield of the oil from the Castor seed is 40%. The physical parameters of the seeds such as moisture content, ash content and linear dimensions like length, width and thickness were studied and found to be 0.32%, 6.44%, 12.02 mm, 8.20 mm and 5.06 mm, respectively. The physico-chemical analysis of the oil showed viscosity of 0.413 cP @ 30 0 C, pH of 5.50, saponification value of 184.6 mg KOH g-1 , iodine value of 87.94gI 2 100g-1 , acid value of 5.92 mg KOH g-1 , specific gravity of 0.968 g/cm 3 , refractive index of 1.477 @ 27.4 0 C, free fatty acid of 2.98% and peroxide value of 157.82 Meq/kg. The extraction yield of 40% obtained makes the commercialization of the seed in Nigeria feasible and profitable. The result of the analysis also confirms the oil to be of good quality and can find application in food industry as food additives as well as for industrial purposes.
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Fruit Oils: Chemistry and Functionality presents a comprehensive overview of recent advances in the chemistry and functionality of lipid bioactive phytochemicals found in fruit oils. The chapters in this text examine the composition, physicochemical characteristics and organoleptic attributes of each of the major fruit oils. The nutritional quality, oxidative stability, and potential food and non-food applications of these oils are also extensively covered. The potential health benefits of the bioactive lipids found in these fruit oils are also a focus of this text. For each oil presented, the levels of omega-9, omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are specified, indicating the level of health-promoting traits exhibited in each. The oils and fats extracted from fruits generally differ from one another both in terms of their major and minor bioactive constituents. The methods used to extract oils and fats as well as the processing techniques such as refining, bleaching and deodorization affect their major and minor constituents. In addition, different post-processing treatments of fruit oils and fats may alert or degrade important bioactive constituents. Treatments such as heating, frying, cooking and storage and major constituents such as sterols and tocols are extensively covered in this text. Although there have been reference works published on the composition and biological properties of lipids from oilseeds, there is currently no book focused on the composition and functionality of fruit oils. Fruit Oils: Chemistry and Functionality aims to fill this gap for researchers, presenting a detailed overview of the chemical makeup and functionality of all the important fruit oils.
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The date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) production is the principal activity and the source of life of peoples of arid and semiarid regions of the world. The production of dates is increasing every season, but losses during harvesting and postharvest handling and marketing are also high due to the incidence of physical and physiological disorders and pathological diseases and to insect infestation. In addition, there is an expansion of exportation of pitted dates. In consequence, a big biomass of date seed is produced. This biomass presents a problem to the station of conditioning of dates. Actually, date seeds are used in animal feeding or in making non-caffeinated coffee. However, date seeds can be used for many others applications such as the production of oil. In fact, date seeds contain 10–12% of the oil. This later could be used in cosmetic, pharmaceutical and food products.
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Recently, herbal drugs and their bioactive compounds have gained popularity in the management of diabetes mellitus (DM), which has become an epidemic disease all over the world and is especially prevalent in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). This study aimed to investigate the antidiabetic effect of ethanolic and aqueous-ethanolic extracts of wild Ricinus communis (R. communis) leaves in streptozotocin (STZ) induced diabetic rats. Diabetic rats were administered orally with the mentioned extracts at doses of 300 and 600 mg/kg/BW for 14 days, and the obtained results of different biochemical parameters were compared with normal control, diabetic control and standard drug glibenclamide (5 mg/kg/BW). The obtained results revealed a remarkable and significantly (P < 0.05) reverse effect of the body weight loss, observed when diabetic rats were treated with ethanol and aqueous-ethanol extracts at 300 mg/kg/BW. Administration of the ethanol extract at 600 mg/kg/BW significantly (P < 0.05) reduced the blood glucose level. A significant increase in the AST, ALT and ALP levels (P < 0.05) was observed in the diabetic control and in the experimental groups with glibenclamide which was also significantly (P < 0.05) lowered after treatment with extracts at special doses. Total proteins, albumin, total bilirubin, direct bilirubin, creatinine and urea were also investigated and compared to the corresponding controls. We showed that administration of R. communis extract generally significantly (P < 0.05) ameliorated the biochemical parameters of diabetic rats. Also, the changes in serum electrolyte profile were assessed and the results demonstrate that administration of extracts at concentration of 600 mg/kg/BW generally inhibits the alteration maintain their levels. The obtained data imply the hypoglycemic effects of this plant, which may be used as a good alternative for managing DM and therefore validating its traditional usage in KSA.
Castor ( Ricinus communis L.) has been transformed from a wasteland colonizer to an important industrial oilseed crop. Its seed oil is one of the most sought-after vegetable oils because of its rich properties and variety of end-users. Castor is an ancient crop but its production now has been limited mainly to India, China and Brazil, for many reasons. Castor oil is a hot market commodity product. It has been recently recognized as an efficient feedstock for biodiesel production. Increasing demand world over for biofuel resources and many recently identified industrial uses of castor oil have escalated castor oil demand. Global demand for castor oil is rising constantly at 3-5% per annum. In the last decade, many countries have started making serious exploratory efforts at growing castor as there is a tremendous scope to establish castor as a supplementary crop production option to farmers and to provide significant returns on investment given high global demand for castor oil. In view of the increasing worldwide interest in castor oil, this review evaluates the global scenario of castor cultivation, exports and imports of castor oil, new interests in castor oil and genetic improvement in productivity. In addition, the current research challenges and priorities have been discussed in the review.
Kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) has received attention worldwide for its commercial value as fiber applications. Kenaf seeds, a by-product from kenaf plant yield kenaf seed oil with no toxicity and primarily contributed by triacylglycerols (99.81%) followed by free fatty acids, diacylglycerols, and monoacylglycerols. Extensive research has related to the processing and applications of kenaf seed oil, which highlighted its potential to use as functional edible oil that advantageous in the food, nutraceutical, and pharmaceutical industry. A chemical refining process with different parameters in each stage has been studied to produce refined kenaf seed oil with removed gums, hydroperoxides, and free fatty acid, as well as no 3-monochloro-1,2-propanediol ester detected. Oleic acid (omega-9) and linoleic acid (omega-6) make up the majority of kenaf seed oil’s fatty acid composition, which is associated with cholesterol-lowering ability. Kenaf seed oil possesses significant health benefits and pharmacological activities such as antioxidant activity, anti-hypercholesterolemic, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, anti-ulcer, and anti-thrombotic due to the presence of bioactive compounds (tocopherols, tocotrienols, phytosterols, and phenolics). Nanoencapsulation and microencapsulation have been applied to the kenaf seed oil to improve its bioaccessibility and bioavailability in the gastrointestinal tract. Oxidative stability of kenaf seed oil has been extended through microencapsulation techniques (spray drying and co-extrusion) and suitable to apply in the functional product development. The chemistry and functionality of kenaf seed oil are reviewed in this chapter to stimulate future research and impending applications.
Castor bean, Ricinus communis L., belongs to the spurge family (Euphorbiaceae). Despite its name, the seed is really not a true bean and it is not related to the bean or legume family Fabaceae. It is an oilseed crop cultivated mainly in India, Mozambique, Brazil, and China; and believed to have polyphyletic origin with four centers of diversity. The plant is an annual herb, or a perennial shrub or small tree. Blooms are found on the stem and certain other parts of the castor bean plant. The inflorescence is an erect and terminal panicle of cymes (panicled cymes). The flowers are usually unisexual and monoecious. The staminate and pistillate flowers are borne on the same inflorescence. Castor bean has a mixed mating system generating both selfed and cross-fertilized offspring. It is basically a long-day plant, but is adaptable, with less yields, to a wide range of photoperiods. The fruit is botanically a “schizocarpic capsule” or regma. The seed is ovoid, tick-like, carunculate, albuminous, poisonous, and allergenic. The germination is epigeal. The oil extracted from the seeds is non-drying in nature with a lot of uses in medicine, cosmetics, biodiesel, and other industries. The detoxified castor bean meal and husk are used as animal feed. The castor bean meal is also an organic manure. The active poison in castor bean seeds is ricin, a very deadly protein called lectin. Ricin is found in the meal or cake after the oil has been extracted. It is not carried over into the oil if it is properly extracted, but remains in the meal. The leaves contain ricin, but in much smaller quantities than in the seeds.
Climate change and fossil fuel reserve depletion both pose challenges for energy security and well-being. Renewable bioenergy is considered as one of the practical alternative and castor plant is a potential choice due to the wide uses of castor oil in the industry. As a nonedible crop, castor plant is suitable for planting in marginal lands, without competition with food crops because of its strong tolerance to drought, high concentration of salt, and the adaptability to climate warming. Additionally, castor plant can be planted in heavy metal contaminated soils for phytoremediation. Lower genetic diversity, poor characterization and exploitation of germplasm and relative lag in genetic research limited castor breeding, resulting in low improvement of castor and the lack of high-yielding varieties with strong resistance to diseases and pests. With the development of the global economy, the increasing labor costs made it a great challenge for developing varieties suitable for machine harvesting. In this chapter, the challenges, priorities, and prospects of castor breeding were reviewed. The climate-smart (CS) traits, the genetic resources of CS genes, and the classical genetics and traditional breeding for CS traits are described; The achievements of molecular mapping of CS genes/QTLs, marker-assisted breeding, genomics-aided breeding, and genetic engineering for CS traits are summarized. These contents are expected to facilitate castor plant research and breeding for CS traits.