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Researchers Suggest Functional Food Benefit For Olive Oil Production Waste

August 22, 2010: 08:16 PM EST
Researchers in Greece suggest in a new study that antioxidant-rich material called mill waste left over from olive oil production may have functional value if extracted and used in other oils and foods. According to the researchers, phenolic extracts could replace synthetic antioxidants to boost food stability. And the process could solve the tricky environmental problem of treating and disposing of mill waste, much of which is not readily biodegradable. The researchers analyzed antioxidants and experimented with various solvent extraction techniques to determine the impact on antioxidant levels. The major phenolic compound found in the mill waste extract was hydroxytyrosol, though various flavonoids were also detected. Ethanol was the best solvent for extraction of phenolic compounds from the waste material.
Theodora-Ioanna Lafka, Andriana E. Lazou, Vassilia J. Sinanoglou and Evangelos S. Lazos, "Phenolic and antioxidant potential of olive oil mill wastes", Food Chemistry , August 22, 2010, © Elsevier BV
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