Euro Fed Lipid
Divisions: Plant LipidsPlant lipids
constitute an important group of biomolecules, since are
the major building blocks in cell membranes and serve as energy reserve
cell. Because of these properties they are of considerable interest in
sectors such as agriculture, food, health and the cosmetics industry.
addition, the sector of renewable energies is showing increasing
the field of plant lipids.
of plants constitute the majority of the reserves of seeds
from field crops like: soya, rape, sunflower, palm tree, and olive
world production attains 120 million tons and represents a sales
turnover of 8
billion euro. In 2005, these crops represented approximately 7 million
cultivated hectares in the EEC (data from FranceAgriMer,
2 / décembre 2009). To that we can add the surface
occupied by olive tree fields in the Mediterranean region, whose
reaches 1.8 million tons.
extracted from these seeds have different properties according
to their composition in lipids and fatty acids. Their uses will be
according to their properties. They are destined to both food and
uses. The improvement of their properties and their diversity are the
research undertaken within our working group and by companies of
size - together it is a broad ongoing sector covering from the
seeds to the production of healthy foods and sustainable building
the chemical industry.
the food uses of vegetable oils, two aspects are important:
on the one hand, productivity improvements to face the increasing
demands of a
world population in continuous growth and the needs of emerging
on the other hand, the improvement of food value in order to decrease
cardiovascular and obesity problems encountered in Western countries.
the first of these objectives, it is necessary to improve output by
or biotechnological methods. The second objective requires the
modification of the
properties of vegetable oils or the anticipated production of new
of particular fatty acids like omega 3 and omega 6 and the
presence of vegetable sterols in the oils of plants are at the base of
functional foods, as these lipids have shown to be beneficial in
cardiovascular diseases, and decreasing the incorporation of
cholesterol in the
membranes of arteries.
also highly valued by cosmetics industry for their free
anti-radicals properties (carotenes, flavanoïdes), and vegetable oils
ever more extensively as the base of solar creams and lotions. In the
the vegetable ceramides and inositols are the active molecules of new
anti-wrinkle creams. The field of application of vegetable lipids in
care industry is only at its beginnings and its development is
limited by the current state of knowledge.
is highly dependent on raw fossil materials whose reserves
are not inexhaustible and whose prices are in continual rise. To
impact of this situation, it has become a priority to find new sources
alternative and renewable energy. Oils from oleaginous field crops like
sunflower and rape present properties close to those of fossil oils and
therefore reasonably probable that alternative raw materials may be
from vegetable oils. Diester is the first example, and the production
materials like biolubricants, solvents, and inks is completely
oils, and more generally the lipids of the plants, are of
undeniable economic and social importance. New industrial investments
particular to the improvement of our society’s health and to
solutions imply the prior development of knowledge of the metabolism of
group organizes the plant lipid session at the annual
Euro Fed Lipid meeting and the biannual European Meeting on Plant
exchange and discuss new developments in our discipline.