Walnut and almond oil screw-press extraction at industrial scale: Effects of process parameters on oil yield and quality
Keywords:Almond oil, Chemical quality parameters, Oil recovery, Screw-press extraction, Walnut oil
Walnut and almond kernels are highly nutritious mainly due to their high oil contents. In this study, 32 factorial experimental designs were used to optimize processes for oil extraction by screw-pressing at industrial scale. Experimental designs included seed moisture content (SMC), and restriction die (RD) as the main processing parameters. Theoretical models were scanned against experimental data in order to optimize oil extraction conditions. The response variables analyzed were oil yield (OY), fine solid content (FC) in oil, and oil quality parameters. Fitted models for OY indicated maximum predicted values similar to the highest experimental values. Walnut oil extractions showed a maximum OY (84.5 ± 2.3 %) at 7.21% SMC, and 10 mm RD. For almond kernels, maximum OY (71.9 ± 3.5%) was obtained at 9.42% SMC, and 12 mm RD. Chemical quality parameters from both oils were in the ranges stated in Codex (FAO/WHO) standards for virgin (non-refined) oils.
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