Palm kernel as a product itself can be further processed into a type of oil known as palm kernel oil. Palm kernel contains an oil content of about 50-55% of oil which is edible, has high stability, free of Cholesterol and healthy.
The palm kernel oil can be used in different spheres of life such as in industries, they are used to make oil fatty acids, glycerol, fatty alcohols etc. Cosmetics and home they are used in making laundry soaps, detergents, toothpaste, food etc. Aside from these mentioned ones, they are also used in pharmaceuticals, plastics and other industries
Palm kernel processing Plans
The processes of getting palm kernel oil ready can be divided into three main stages, which are:
- Palm kernel pretreatment
- Palm kernel oil pressing
- Palm kernel oil refining
Palm kernel Pretreatment
The raw palm kernel has to be cleaned, the shafts, stone or any other attachments that the screw press machine was not designed for should be removed so as not to damage it.
Palm-nut shelling and sorting
In this process, the palm nut is divided into palm kernel and palm kernel shell and the cracked palm kernel shells are separated by air separation machine so as to make it free of the shells.
Palm kernel Crushing
The crushing process of the palm kernel is done by a rolling crusher, the palm kernel is loaded into the rolling crusher and it crushes the palm kernel. This rolling crusher machine is simple and easy to operate the machine.
Palm kernel Flaking
In this process, the crushed palm kernel is put into a flaking machine which is made up of two rods rotating simultaneously in opposite directions.
Palm kernel steamed cooking
The flaked palm kernel needs to be steam cooked, so as to destroy and reduce some of the molecular properties of the palm kernel, that would, in turn, make it more usable. The oil cells of the palm kernel are destroyed under very high temperature to denature the protein, the viscosity and surface tension are also reduced.
Palm Kernel Oil Pressing
In this process, the palm kernel is put into a pressing machine which does a dual process of pressing and squeezing the palm kernel oil.
This is the process of removing dirt and impurities from the palm kernel oil. The result after the pressing adds some kind of impurities.
Palm Kernel Oil refining
Palm kernel oil degumming
To refine the palm kernel oil, some amount of hot water or dilute acids, salt or other electrolyte are added to the oil and stir at about 50 degrees Celsius.
Palm kernel oil deacidification
This is done to reduce the acidity or the acid level of the palm kernel oil. Some amount of base or alkali can be added to do this
Palm kernel oil Decoloring
Most times, because of the different amount of chemicals added, the chemicals inside the palm kernel and the processes, the palm kernel oil has the tendencies to change in colour. some forms of adsorbent can be added to avoid this.
Palm kernel oil deodorizing
Most times, the smell of the newly made oil is not so good which affects its storage and market value, for the smell to be removed or minimized, there has to be a direct steam stripping.
After all, packaging it should be taken seriously as a product without good packaging would have a low sales rate compared to another with good packaging.