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Palm Oil - Things You Need To Know

What is Palm Oil?

When it comes to cooking oils, palm oil is one of the important and versatile vegetable oil which is used as a raw material in many food and non-food industries. With an average life of up to 25 years, a palm tree (per hectare) can produce 10 tonnes of fresh fruit bunches.  

Benefits of Palm Oil

Rich in calories with the highest content of Vitamin E and carotenoids, Palm Oil is also very rich in Vitamin A. The Vitamin A content of the oil helps boost the immune system. Like other oil's, it is also 100% free of genetic modification. The nutritional benefits of this oil make it essential for a healthy life. It is nearly found in half of the packaged products ranging from doughnuts, chocolates, pizzas to shampoo, lipstick and toothpaste.

With many of these benefits, oil palm (an agricultural crop) has been also playing a major role in giving rise to three important sources of food including palm oil, palm kernel oil, and palm kernel cake. The first two products are edible and are used as cooking oil, bakery fats, ice creams, Vitamin E, and palm kernel cake is used as an animal feed.

Owing to the high land productivity of palm oil, it produces 0.42, 0.59, and 0.36 tonnes of oil per hectare for sunflower, rapeseed and soyabeen respectively. If palm oil is used as a substitute to rapeseed, it needs to be highlighted that seven times less land will be used in the production. Sparing hectares of land, it allows the farmers to grow other fruits, vegetables and food grains.

Palm Oil and its Uses

Cosmetics, soaps, toothpaste, lubricants and ink- contains palm oil in form or the other. Moreover, it also aids in preventing Vitamin A deficiency, brain diseases, aging, and cancer. Malaria, high cholesterol, cyanide poisoning are some of its other benefits. And yes ladies, if you are trying hard to lose those extra inches, palm oil can be the best escape as it enhances your metabolism.

Palm Oil and Food Security

Food Security is basically the measure of availability of food and one’s ability to access it. This is one question that is actually very critical for developing world. With the growth in population, the world is facing scarcity of land to grow crops and fulfill the demand of food. At this point of time, palm oil comes to rescue as it uses very less land and as the land pressure increases, palm oil production becomes very vital.

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