Oils and fats are used mainly for food purposes

Oils and fats are used mainly for food purposes. However, both oilseeds and extracted oil are also used in some part as animal feed. Oils also have industrial uses. Traditionally, these have been mainly used in production of soap and other molecules. But increasingly they are used for energy producing purposes, such as transport use by automobiles, trains, airplanes or boats, or direct production of energy. In terms of type, the market can be classified into palm oil, canola oil, olive oil, sunflower oil, specialty blended oil and corn oil.
Edible oil is further segmented into blended (mix of various oils) and pure oil. Pure oil is comparatively more expensive than blended oil. Blended oil is the preferable choice of consumers in terms of cooking. In case of banaspati, there are two major segments: Virtually Trans-fat (VTF) and Non-VTF. In buying decision of banaspati – taste, aroma and heritage play an important role. In case of cooking oils, vitamins, no cholesterol benefits, light color, less viscosity, all-purpose use and aroma are key features.
Edible oil processing comprises three operations – crushing and expelling (separating oil from the solids – generally done by small-scale expellers/oilseed crushers), solvent extraction (to crush and process hard oilseeds with low oil content such as soybean and cottonseed as well as chemically extract residual oil from the oil-cake), and oil refining (which includes some or all of the following treatments—filtering, neutralization, winterizing, bleaching, deodorization and degumming, and filtering to make oil fit for human consumption).

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