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Sunflower oil is expressed from the seeds of sunflowers. Large growing areas for sunflowers are in East Europe and France. Sunflowers belong in the botanical family of asters (bot.: Compositae or Asteraceae).

Cold-pressing or extraction of sunflower seeds produces a highly valuable oil, which contains many unsaturated fatty acids (65%). In terms of biological value it ranks right after safflower oil. Sunflower oil contains predominantly the essential linoleic acid, on average around 60 percent but depending on the variety between 48 and 74 percent. Sunflower oil is popular for its mild taste, its light yellow colour and high biological value make it a sought-after raw material for the production of margarine.

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Cooking with sunflower oil

Cold-pressed sunflower oil should not be heated. It is used for the preparation of cold foods and salads. Refined sunflower oils may be used for baking and frying but to preserve their valuable properties it is better to heat it only for a short time.

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