Healthier Profile

ABOUT OMEGA-9 OILS

THE HISTORY OF OMEGA-9 OILS

The origin of Omega-9 Oils can be traced back to the mid-1980s when food manufacturers started more widely using hydrogenation to improve oil stability and product shelf life. This extensive use of hydrogenation led to a significant increase in consumer consumption of trans fats, which research later suggested could have negative health consequences. The medical community had long recommended reducing dietary fat, but now they were starting to understand the differences between specific good and bad fats.

Researchers at Dow AgroSciences realized they could use their expertise in plant science to respond to consumer and food industry demand for healthier ingredients by breeding better seed oil profiles. Their solution? Improve upon key oilseed crops so they produce naturally stable oil that does not require hydrogenation but continues to deliver strong results for farmers. This work began with canola because with minimal levels of saturated fats, it already had a favorable nutrition profile. In addition, canola is a versatile and resilient crop that produces oil-rich seeds.

Through traditional plant breeding, Dow AgroSciences developed an improved fatty acid profile in canola, with zero trans fats and low saturated fats (“bad fats”). The new technology was named Omega-9 Canola Oil, due to high levels of its namesake omega-9 monounsaturated fats. In 1996, the technology became commercially available as NexeraTM canola seed. Now, Omega-9 Canola Oil is readily available as an important source of the good fats the latest nutrition guidelines recommend.

Omega-9 Canola Oil also offers superior performance. The oil is versatile, affordable and naturally stable, which helps maintain freshness and taste without additives or preservatives, keeping labels simple and clean. Farmers and customers can choose between genetically modified (GM) and non-GM platforms.

Omega-9 Canola Oil is grown on more than 1.5 million acres, primarily in Western Canada and the Northern United States, by farmers who participate in an identity preservation program. The more than 1 billion pounds of oil produced annually can be easily traced from the farmers who grow the plants to the processing facilities where harvested seeds become oil.

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