CMU’s Faculty of Agro-Industry has built a prototype machine to extract carotenoids from crude palm oil that can help farmers by increasing the value of their palm crop.
CMU’s Associate Professor Dr. Patcharin Raviyan, Faculty of Agro-Industry explained that palm oil is popular for frying food, making up 70% of all vegetable oil. Palm oil is produced from crude palm oil that has a red-orange color derived from carotenoids, which is vitamin A based antioxidant.
Currently, Thailand has to import carotenoids for the food, pharmaceutical, and cosmetics industries, which is expensive. Thus, the prototype machine project has been supported by the Agricultural Research Development Agency (ARDA) and is located at the CMU’s Mae Hia Research, Demonstrative and Training Center. The prototype machine has been developed using local resources and can be maintained by a local technician. It was designed to produce quality carotenoids at capacity of 100 kg crude palm oil /batch, where the remaining fat that has been left over after extracting carotenoids, can be used to produce cooking oil or biodiesel.
It is anticipated that the production of carotenoids by using an extracting machine will help the palm oil industry and improve the nation’s economics.