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Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil

Rapeseed Oil was first introduced into the U.K by the Romans.  Part of the Brasssica family, related to mustard seed, cabbage and turnip for example, the main cultivar planted in the UK is Brassica napus. Since the 1970s rapeseed oil consumption has grown dramatically, being produced as commodity oil in the highly refined form, often referred to as vegetable oil. However in recent years, due to the excellent health credentials of the oil nutritionally it is now becoming a popular choice as a cold pressed unrefined oil.

The plants grow to a height of 75-175 cm and have distinctive yellow flowers with blue-green leaves. The seeds are small, round and black-red in colour. Large areas of rapeseed are cultivated in the European Union, China, India, Canada and Australia. 

Rapeseed is planted either in the autumn (winter varieties) or in the spring (summer varieties). The winter varieties have a longer vegetation period and give a better yield, but can only be grown in areas with a mild winter climate. In Europe winter rapeseed is the dominating variety, whereas in Canada only summer rapeseed is grown. The harvest period in the Northern Hemisphere starts in late July for the winter varieties, in late August or early September for the summer varieties.

Characteristics

Clear yellow coloured oil with smooth texture. Light and clean flavour, with no oily or bitter after taste; subtle nutty flavour can also get hints of butter or green grass. Waxes can occasionally cause fine sedimentation, more likely to be found in oil produced in winter months, this is totally natural as the oil is not refined or de-gummed.

Uses

Ideal culinary oil which can be used from dressings through to high applications (not ideal for deep fat frying) smoke point around 220°C. Excellent base oil for cosmetic and health care applications, with vitamin E content, good skin absorption and benign to all skin types.

Typical nutritional analysis

Typical values per 100ml
Energy 3361kj/817kcal
Protein 0.5G
Carbohydrate 1.0g
of which sugars <0.1g
Fat 90.1g
of which saturates 6.4g
mono-unsaturates 55.8g
of which Omega 9 54.5g
polyunsaturates 23.9g
of which Omega 3 8.9g
of which Omega 6 15.0g
Fibre <0.1g
Sodium trace
Vitamin E 21.4mg

Other beneficial minor components found in higher concentrations in cold pressed rapeseed oil include:

  • Sterols 0.45 to 1.13%
  • Carotenoids up to 95mg/kg
  • Polar Lipids up to 3%

Typical fatty acid profile

    %
16:0 pamitic 4.6
16:1 hexadecenoic 0.2
17:0 hexadecatrienoic 0.1
18:0 stearic 1.9
18:1 oleic 84.3
18:2 linoleic 17.5
18:3 α-linolenic 8.5
20:0 cosanoic 0.6
20:1 cosenoic 1.2
20:2(n-6) cosadienoic 0.1
22:0 docosanoic 0.3
22:1 docosenoic 0.2
24:0 tetracosanoic 0.1
24:1 tetracosenoic 0.1
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