The Ultimate Fats and Oils Guide

Edible fats and oils are among the most important ingredients in many-processed food items. The quality and attributes of these essential dietary components affect the products that we eat, making their analysis and characterization a key part of the food production process.

Edible fats and oils are essential components of our diets, either consumed directly or as ingredients in food. Although chemically very similar, the distinction is that oils are liquid at room temperature, whereas fats remain solid. Fats and oils serve several purposes; they can be used to alter the texture of foods, to add flavour, as shortening, or for cooking. Whatever the application, accurate characterization is crucial to maintaining quality, for instance, to determine whether chocolate melts in your hand or in your mouth.

This guide offers a short introduction to edible fats and oils: their sources, history and use. It provides a 360 degree overview of the measurement of key parameters for characterization and quality monitoring purposes, including:

·         Quality control methods: dropping point, water content, moisture determination, differential scanning calorimetry, and titration

·         UV/VIS spectroscopy

·         Application examples and results

·         Tips and tricks to simplify measurements