Ghana Journal of Science

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Physicochemical characteristics of castor oil from local wild castor plant in Ghana

B Mensah, R Ochran


Physicochemical characteristics of castor oil from seeds of the local wild castor plant (Ricinus communis) found in Ghana were determined to evaluate its suitability for exploitation for industrial purposes. The castor seeds were found to be rich in oil, containing 57 per cent castor oil of which 37 per cent was easily expressed by cold pressing. The physicochemical characteristics of the pressed oil were found to be comparable to those reported by others. The characteristics included iodine value, 82; saponification value, 177; acid value, 2.7; and hydroxyl value, 180. The rich oil content and its high quality suggest that the oil is suitable for commercial exploitation as an industrial raw material in various preparations such as in cosmetics and in paints.

Ghana Journal of Science Vol. 45, 2005: 41-44
AJOL African Journals Online