A Forum on Edible Oils – Myths and Facts was organised by the Indian Consumer Federation (ICF) recently reports F&B News. During this forum, R B N Prasad, chairperson, scientific panel on oils and fats, FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) said that oils need to be refined for safety purposes. Elaborating on this he said that oils come from expellers or solvent extraction plant and thus contain impurities that can hamper with its safety, flavour, odour and appearance. Thus refining not only makes oil palatable but also removes these impurities thus making it safe for consumption.
Refining Of Oil Is Essential
“We are honoured to share knowledge about oils and its facts to the consumers through this forum. Cooking or edible oils are very important for the maintenance of good health. These are energy-rich components in our daily food and provide about 9kcal/g, whereas carbohydrates and proteins provide only 4kcal/g,” said Prasad to F&B News. “FSSAI has recognised several oils for cooking purposes, and some of the most common cooking oils being consumed are as follows – coconut oil, cottonseed oil, groundnut oil, linseed/flaxseed oil, mustard oil, rapeseed or mustard oil (low erucic acid), olive oil, palmolein, palm stearin, palm kernel oil, rice bran oil, safflower seed oil, til oil (gingelly or sesame oil), soybean oil, maize (com) oil, sunflower seed oil and high-oleic sunflower seed oil. The majority of these oils require refining,” he added.
“Some of the oils, like groundnut oil, sesame, coconut oil, mustard oil and safflower oil, which are extracted using expelling technique, can be consumed without refining. However, in some cases, these seeds are also affected by aflatoxin during harvesting. It is advisable to refine these oils before consumption. Several oils, like sunflower, palm soyabean, cottonseed, rice bran, etc., are required to be sold only as refined oils, as these oils are produced by solvent extraction process, as they may contain solvent residues. FSSAI and other global agencies permit several processing aids for the refining of oils. Hence, refined oils are totally safe to use as cooking oil. Globally, over 85 per cent of the oil consumed is refined oil.”