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July 18 2011, 00:00 Source: APK-Inform Views: 11757

High-oleic sunflower: new opportunities for Russia and Ukraine

Common sunflower of linoleic type covers the main share of the world production of sunflower seeds. During the recent decade, the range of countries started producing the oilseed with a high content of oleic acid in addition to traditional types of sunflower seed. At the same time, the world market increased consumption of high-oleic sunflower oil. What prospects and opportunities does the trend create for Russia and Ukraine?

The growth of food and industry consumption of vegetable oils and protein meals caused the active development of world production of oilseeds. According to estimates of the USDA, during recent 10 years (2000-2010), oilseeds production volumes in the world increased by 135 mln tonnes (+43%) - to the level of 449 mln tonnes, the world vegetable oils production increased by 56 mln tonnes (+62%) - to 146 mln tonnes, meanwhile the consumption increased by 56.4 mln tonnes (+64%) - to 145 mln tonnes.

In addition to the increase of consumption of palm, soybean and rapeseed oils, there is the active growth of sunflower oil demand. The following countries are the main producers of sunflower: EU-27, Ukraine, Russia, Argentina. Their share in the industry is about 82% of world production of oilseeds. Besides, EU-27 is the major consumer of sunflower oil.

Sunflower oil is one of the most valuable by-products of sunflower seed, which is divided into 4 types depending on fatty acids content:

High oleic sunflower was developed in accordance with the traditional methods of selection. Duration of a patent for production of high oleic sunflower seed and oil is expired, that is why to date there are more companies which are able to produce and promote the products. The standard fatty acids structure of sunflower oil: genetic potential of oleic acid content is the highest among the oilseeds – to 94-95%, meanwhile the minimal level of it should be not lower than 80%, linoleic acid – 9%, saturated fats – 9%.

NuSun® or mid-oleic content sunflower was developed in the USA in accordance with the traditional methods of selection. To date it is the most popular sunflower type, produced in the USA and Canada. There are sufficient volumes of NuSun sunflower oil on the market, and its price is competitive compared to other vegetable oils, which are alike by their features. The standard fatty acids structure of the type of sunflower oil: oleic acid – 65%, linoleic acid – 26%, saturated fats – 9%.

High linoleic sunflower is the traditional sunflower type, which they produce during the many years. The standard fatty acids structure of sunflower oil: linoleic acid – 69%, oleic acid – 20%, saturated fats – 11%. To date the countries of North America produce the type of sunflower oil in small volumes due to the limited usage for frying.

High stearin sunflower is the newest type of sunflower, developed in the USA in accordance with the traditional methods of selection. To date there is the active patent for production of this type of sunflower oil, it is produced under the brand of Nutrisun™. Its advantage is in its functionality, in particular in its alternativeness on relatio to the partially hydrogenated oils and tropic oils. The standard fatty acids structure of sunflower oil: stearin acid – 18%, oleic acid – 72%, linoleic acid – 5%, other saturated fats – 5%.

The popularization of the health nutrition in the developed countries, and also the demands of the world fat-and-oil industry in new types of oils, which have the necessary features, and which cost will be cheaper compared to oils with the same properties, became the major drivers of development of high- and mid-oleic sunflower oil industry production.

What is high oleic sunflower oil?

-                    High oleic sunflower oil is rich with the high content of oleic (monounsaturated) acid -oleic acid content is 80-90%);

-      contains less than 10% of saturated fats;

-      does not need the hydrogenation, therefore does not contain trans fats;

-      physical properties — neutral taste, clear pale-yellow color;

-      mainly applied for food industry during over 10 years.

The major advantages of high-oleic and mid-oleic sunflower oil is the high content of the vitamin E – the natural antioxidant (alfa tocopherol), the long term of storing, the neutral taste, and also presence of the features which are perfect for frying due to the high content of the oleic oil and the low content of the saturated fats (less than 10%). The sunflower oils with the highest content of the poly- and mono-nonsaturated fats (linoleic and oleic acids) and with the smallest share of saturated and trans fats, have the better assimilability and are the most useful for the human health.

About 5 years ago the share of oleic oil totaled about 5% in the world production of sunflower oils, to date it is the niche segment of the oilseeds market and takes about 10% from the world production volumes of sunflower oils.

Various vegetable oils have essentially different qualitative properties depending on their usage – home or commercial. One of the most important characteristics of the commodity oils is the resistance for high temperatures during frying during the longer time. In order to increase resistance, a lot of oils shold be hydrogenated for the further commercial usage – the process when unhealthy trans fats are formed.

Traditionally, oils with the high content of saturated fats or oils, which are totally or partially hydrogenated, may be used for commercial purpose, because they have the sufficient resistance level, have the corresponding tasting features and valid term, however these oils are not good for health. For example, cottonseed oil has the natural high resistance level, and even without hydrogenation, it is approved for industrial usage, but at the same time, it contents the large-scale share of saturated fats (25-27% from the general volume of fats).

Olive oil is one of the most useful oils for health. Its fatty acids structure is similar to high oleic sunflower oil, owing to the high content of mono non-saturated fats. In addition, olive oil has rather high level of resistance due to the low content of Omega-3 fatty acids. On the other hand, according to the temperature of the beginning of smoke formation this oil essentially assets to other oils and is able to provide the specific taste and flavor for food.

High oleic sunflower oil solves one of the most important problems relating to the quality of vegetable oils – improvement of oil resistance to the auto-oxidation in order to prevent the accumulation of toxic products during the process of oil processing during its storing and during the direct usage. The stated kind of sunflower oil is good for food production as oil for spraying of snacks, crackers and dry breakfast cereals, as oil for frying, baby food products and for elderly people, and cases when it is necessary to use oil with heightened oxidation stability.

What did restrain the increase of acreage of high-oleic sunflower?

Existence of a patent for growing;

low material interest;

first grades / hybrids were unstable and low-yielding, and also had a low tolerance to diseases and plant pests (Broomrape), significantly inferior to linoleic sunflower on the above parameters;

low level of awareness about the benefits of high-oleic sunflower oil.

What has changed?

-                    Currently, there are hybrids that do are highly competitive with classical hybrids in terms of yield, stability, resistance to diseases and weeds;

-                    high interest of large-scale crushers (EU-27)

-                    Promotion of healthy lifestyles in the developed countries.

At the moment, the world's largest countries-producers of oleic sunflower oils are the EU-27, in particular France, Spain and Hungary, as well as the United States.

Sunflower is the traditional oilseed, produced in Russia and in Ukraine. The growing demand in sunflower oil from the domestic and export markets for Russia and the export market for Ukraine formed the conditions for development of sunflower seeds production and processing industries in both countries.

During the recent 5 seasons (period from 2006 to 2010) in Russia sunflower sowing areas increased by 16% to the level of 7.15 mln ha, in Ukraine – up 15% to 4.57 mln ha.

In Russia as well as in Ukraine, the traditional linoleic oilseed varieties and hybrids form the major share of sunflower production. At the same time, during the last years the high-oleic and confectionary varieties of sunflower took own niche in the structure of sunflower production of the country.

According to data, received during preparation of the study "High oleic sunflower market in Russia and Ukraine: current condition and potential", the share of high-oleic sunflower in the general production volumes of sunflower seed in Russia in 2010 totaled 1% and 2.2% in Ukraine.

According to results of the polling, the majority of agricultural producers know nothing about the features of the modern hybrids of high-oleic sunflower seeds. It is despite the fact that, according to analysts of APK-Inform Agency, Russia and Ukraine has the great potential for increasing production volumes of high-oleic sunflower and sunflower oil, and export trading of high-oleic sunflower oil.

You can become acquainted more detailed information about the current state and prospects of the global market of high-oleic sunflower seed and oil, pricing trends of these products in the world, by purchasing the study "High oleic sunflower market in Russia and Ukraine: current condition and potential" (available as the Russian-language and English-language version). Besides, the study revealed the following issues:

– prospects for change of the capacities of the world market of high-oleic sunflower oil;

– prospects of the world production of high-oleic sunflower oil and world trade;

– description and analysis of the factors contributing and limiting development of the industry of high-oleic sunflower in Russia and Ukraine;

– main players of the market of high-oleic sunflower seed and oil in Russia and Ukraine;

– comparison of prices for sunflower, high-oleic sunflower, olive and sunflower-olive oils on the markets of Russia and Ukraine;

– description and analysis of the factors contributing and limiting development of the processing industry of high-oleic sunflower in Russia and Ukraine;

– high-oleic sunflower seed and oil export trading in Russia and Ukraine;

– estimation of the long-term trends in export trading of high-oleic sunflower oil;

– prospects of the Russian and Ukrainian markets of high-oleic sunflower seed and oil.

Methodology of the study

The study "High oleic sunflower market in Russia and Ukraine: current condition and potential" is based on the data from the official sources of statistics of Ukraine, Russia, the USA, Argentina and France, the results of polling of the key segments of the high-oleic sunflower market in Russia and Ukraine (suppliers of sunflower seeds, producers of traditional and high-oleic sunflower varieties, crushers of traditional and high-oleic sunflower, exporters of sunflower seeds and sunflower oil), data of the world leading analytical and consulting agencies.

Besides, the special session of the seminar will be devoted to the topic, which to be held at the conference "Oilseeds & Oils - 2011" on September 22-24 in Istanbul. During recent years, both trading and crushing companies, and investors show the great interest in prospects for this market development. The session-seminar on high-oleic sunflower will help to the conference participants to better understand the opportunities and risks in this market segment.

On the issue of purchasing the study "High oleic sunflower market in Russia and Ukraine: current condition and potential", please contact the marketing department of APK-Inform agency: Elena Nikitina, tel: +38 (0562) 32-15-95 (ext. 115), +7 (495) 789-44-19; e-mail: [email protected]

More detailed information concerning participation, sponsorship, advertising and being a speaker of the conference "Oilseeds & Oils – 2011" is provided by the Organizational committee: Irina Ozip, +380 562 320795, +380 56 7265272 (Ext. 164), e-mail: [email protected], [email protected]

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