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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Functional Foods Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #336015

Research Project: Improving Quality, Stability, and Functionality of Oils and Bioactive Lipids

Location: Functional Foods Research

Title: Physical properties of beeswax, sunflower wax, and candelilla wax mixtures and organogels

item Moser, Jill
item Hwang, Hong-Sik

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/30/2017
Publication Date: 5/3/2017
Citation: Moser, J.K., Hwang, H. 2017. Physical properties of beeswax, sunflower wax, and candelilla wax mixtures and organogels [abstract]. American Oil Chemists Society.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: There is increased interest in natural waxes as alternatives to partially hydrogenated oils and saturated fats as oil structuring agents. Using relatively low concentrations (0.5-5%), natural waxes are able to form crystalline networks, or organogels, which bind liquid oil. Each natural wax is uniquely composed of long-chain hydrocarbons, long chain fatty acid alcohol esters, long chain alcohols, or mixtures of these and other components in various proportions. The composition and purity of each wax type plays a role in determining the physical properties of organogels, such as the level of wax needed to bind oil, the melting and crystallization properties, and the firmness and rheological properties. The melting and crystallization properties of binary mixtures of beeswax, sunflower wax, and candelilla wax were investigated, along with the physical properties of organogels made with the wax mixtures. Each wax combination had unique thermal properties, but beeswax: candelilla wax mixtures were most interesting because the melting point of mixtures ranging from (w:w) 20:80 to 90:10 beeswax: candelilla wax was lower than either pure component (63.7 °C and 64.9 °C, respectively). Organogels made with beeswax:candelilla wax at several ratios also had lower melting and crystallization temperatures and higher firmness compared to the pure wax organogels. These results have future implications for designing organogels using combinations of materials to achieve desirable physical properties that can be modified for different applications.