Variation in oil content and fatty acid composition of the seed oil of Acacia species collected from the northwest zone of India.J Sci Food Agric. 2012 Aug 30; 92(11):2310-5.JS
The oil content and fatty acid composition of the mature seeds of Acacia species collected from natural habitat of the northwest zone of the Indian subcontinent (Rajasthan) were analyzed in order to determine their potential for human or animal consumption.
Oil content varied between 40 and 102 g kg⁻¹. The highest oil content was obtained in Acacia bivenosa DC. (102 g kg⁻¹) among the nine Acacia species. The fatty acid composition showed higher levels of unsaturated fatty acids, especially linoleic acid (~757.7 g kg⁻¹ in A. bivenosa), oleic acid (~525.0 g kg⁻¹ in A. nubica) and dominant saturated fatty acids were found to be 192.5 g kg⁻¹ palmitic acid and 275.6 g kg⁻¹ stearic acid in A. leucophloea and A. nubica respectively. Seed oils of Acacia species can thus be classified in the linoleic-oleic acid group. Significant variations were observed in oil content and fatty acid composition of Acacia species.
The present study revealed that the seed oil of Acacia species could be a new source of high linoleic-oleic acid-rich edible oil and its full potential should be exploited. The use of oil from Acacia seed is of potential economic benefit to the poor native population of the areas where it is cultivated. The fatty acid composition of Acacia seed oils is very similar to that reported for commercially available edible vegetable oils like soybean, mustard, sunflower, groundnut and olive. Hence the seed oil of Acacia species could be a new source of edible vegetable oil after toxicological studies.