Researchers Discover New Use for Soybean Oil

Soybean growers may be excited to learn that University of Guelph researchers have recently found a new use for the oil from a specialty soybean variety.

The variety, OAC 13-55C-HL, is high in linoleic fatty acids, which work well in the production of industrial materials such as paints, coatings and epoxies, according to today’s Oilseed Innovation Partners (OIP) release.

The oil from this soybean “has a fatty acid profile that is approximately 33% higher in linoleic acid than commodity soybean oil,” the release stated.

Through this discovery, producers could see new market opportunities for their oilseeds.

“Recent studies point to a possible 16% market share for the oil and that will require an estimated 60,000 acres of identity preserved soybeans,” Rob Roe, director of bioproduct commercialization with OIP, said in the release.

“These soybeans would be grown under contract and the growers would receive a premium,” Roe told Farms.com.

The specialty oil was tested against the oils of other feedstocks, including commodity soybean oil, linoleic sunflower oil and linseed oil, the release stated.

The results from the first trial were promising, as the resin made from the new soybean oil showed performance characteristics superior to those made from the other oils, Roe said.

Researchers and industry partners (OPC Polymers and The Material Solution) have began the performance testing phase.

Dr. Gary Ablett, a soybean breeder at the University of Guelph, developed the variety two decades ago. Before passing away in 2012, he shared the research with Dr. Istvan Rajcan, another soybean researcher at the university, who continued the work with graduate students.

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