Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Why Soy oil is everywhere

In 1989 soybean was the "most wildely used ebidle oil int he world, supplying 24 percent of the worlds edible fat and oil consumption." *

Nearly 15 years later not much had changed "In the 2002–2003 growing season, 30.6 million tons of soybean oil were produced worldwide, constituting about half of worldwide edible vegetable oil production, and thirty percent of all fats and oils produced, including animal fats and oils derived from tropical plants" (ref)

I find it extremely fascinating to know why we do the things we take for granted. Sometimes the most mundane for example the space shuttle and horses ass. The reason that soy oil is used so much is it was a "waste" produce in making high protein feeds for American animals. America barn feeds there dairy cows, and often beef as well. Chickens also need a high protein diet and soy is also added to pet foods to boost the protein levels. soy was used to do this because it has a very high protein content, and post processing has approximately 50% protein.

To create these high protein feeds the oil first need to be extracted. So as the market for high protein feeds increased, so did the volume of soy oil. So today soy oil is the biggest oil produced for human consumption.

* Wiedermann, L., Soybean oil, commentary and insights. Lipid Technology vol 1 no 1 1989 pg 7

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