Published:  03:38 AM, 20 May 2017

Rice bran oil gains popularity

Rice bran oil is getting popularity day by day across the country due to its natural and cholesterol-free characteristic that can replace soybean oil and will help reduce the dependence on the imported cooking oil. More than 17 leading companies including ACI, Abdul Monem, Pran, City Group, Mozumder Group and Roshid Agro have been manufacturing this natural oil. Many local companies are eying to fresh investment in the sector for increasing use of rice bran oil.

According to the commerce ministry, country's edible oil demand is 1.6 million tons annually. Local rice bran oil shares about five percent out of total demand.  Industry insiders say if the local manufacturing companies can utilize their hundred percent capacities in producing natural oil, it can meet more than 40 percent of the total demand. According to Institute of Nutrition and Food Science of Dhaka University, rice bran oil is the extraction from the outer brown layer of rice under the husk. It is notable for its high smoke point of 232 °C (450 °F) and its mild flavour, making it suitable for high-temperature cooking methods such as stir frying and deep frying. It is popular as cooking oil in several Asian countries, including Bangladesh, Japan, India and China.

Rice bran oil is edible one which is used in the preparation of vegetable ghee. Rice bran wax, obtained from rice bran oil extract, is used as a substitute for carnauba wax in cosmetics, confectionery, shoe creams and polishing compounds. Abu Sayem, General Manager of Rashid Oil Mills Ltd, said huge number of consumers turning to rice bran oil from soybean oil, palm oil and sunflower oil. In Bangladesh the natural oil  manufacturing started in 2011. At the beginning this oil was not popular due to misunderstanding but now it is getting popularity day by day across the country.

He has also said there are hundreds of auto-rice mills across the country. Most rice mills' owners do not have oil mill. As a result the rice mills' owners have been supplying raw materials of rice bran oil. The existing rice bran manufacturing companies are getting raw materials of the oil easily. As a result leading manufacturing company is showing interest for more investment in the sector.

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