Do you find you are interested in canola oil but need to know a little bit more about it? Look no further! Here are 15 quick tips about canola oil you need to know.
- Canada is where most Canola Oil is produced
- The origin of the word Canola is debated. Some believe that Canola stands for Canadian Oil, where Canadian stands for the CAN and OLA represents Oil. On the other hand, some contest that Canola stands for Canadian Oil Low Acid (CAN-O-L-A). This is the more likely winner for the origin of the name!
- It's produced from the Canola Oil Plant. This plant is a hybridized version of the Rapeseed plant, and its proper name is now Canola. This hybridization process took place through traditional breeding methods, not genetic engineering.
- Chemically, Canola Oil is different than Rapeseed in that it must have less than 2% erucic acid, which is less than 30 micromoles of glucosinolates. It can not be called Canola unless it meets these chemical standards.
- Canola is a plant from the same family that cabbage, broccoli and, cauliflower comes from: the Brassica family.
- Canola seeds are grown on tall plants that yield pods. These pods resemble pea pods, and each one is filled with about 20 brown or black seeds. These seeds are where the oil comes from.
- The average seed of Canola is 45% oil.
- Non-GMO Canola Oil has gained popularity in recent years. This type of Oil avoids the use of seeds that have been grown using genetic modification.
- Genetic modification became more common in Canola plants years ago to help them grow more successfully. The genetic modification made the plants more tolerant to Roundup and also to produce Bt toxins that are toxic to certain insects.
- 90+% of Canola Oil produced in the US is not non-GMO.
- Canola Oil has a high heat tolerance, light taste profile, and light yellow color, making it ideal for baking, cooking, and frying.
- Canola oil can be solvent expelled or expeller pressed from the seeds. Solvent expelling uses hexane to draw the oil out of the seed, and it produces the highest yield, which makes this oil cheaper. Expeller pressing squeezes the seed to get the oil out and doesn’t have as high of a yield. Because of that, this version is more expensive, but it’s also healthier as it doesn’t use any chemicals for extraction.
- Most non-GMO canola oil available on the market is also expeller pressed.
- Organic canola oil also exists, and is naturally non-GMO. Organic canola oil is also expeller pressed and can be Non-GMO Project Verified.
- Once the oil is expelled, the remaining solids (known as the canola meal) is often used for animal feed.
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