Technology Features & Specifications
Plant oil is usually produced only in the seeds of plants such as soybean, sunflower and canola or the fruits of oil palm. These sources represent only a small fraction of the plant biomass with the rest of the plant not directly used for oil accumulation. The Leaf Oil technology switches on oil production and accumulation in the entire plant, significantly increasing productivity compared to conventional plant oil crops. The plant oil produced in the leafy biomass are normal triglyceride type oils, just like canola oil, soybean oil, and other vegetable oils.
It has been demonstrated that leaves can produce in excess of 35% oil, far higher than the level produced in soybean seed. The technology provider is working toward deploying this technology in high biomass crops such as tobacco and sorghum to produce oil in greater quantities and at a lower cost of goods than ever before.
The plant oils produced are similar to normal vegetable oils, rich in C18 fatty acids and highly monounsaturated. They can be used in food/feed applications:
- Extracted vegetable oil for food and feed use
- Direct use of harvested plant matter in animal feeding
The plant oils are also suitable for use in many industrial applications:
- Oleochemicals (paints, surfactants, detergents, lubricants, plastics)
- Biofuels (green diesel, biojet, biodiesel
Technoeconomic evaluation of the production chain by the technology provider has shown uising this plaftom, the company can produce oil at a significantly lower cost than current plant oil crops. The plant oils are normal vegetable oils which can be drop-in for many applications, or tailored for specialty applications.