Vateria indica oil

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Vateria indica oil is extracted from the seeds of the vateria indica plant, a species in the Dipterocarpaceae family. The tree is also known as the Indian copal tree. Indigenous to India, the Western Ghats of Karnataka (Dakshin and Uttar Kannada, Chikmagalur, Hassan), Kerala (Kannur, Calicut, Palghat, Thiruvananthapuram) and Tamil Nadu (Coimbatore, Annamalai, Tinnaveli); It thrives in evergreen forests, up to an altitude of 800 meters.[1] Oil from the seeds is extracted through a chemical refining process. Vateria indica oil is also edible.

Common names in Indian languages[edit]

  • Sanskrit: Dhupa, Kundura, Ajakarna, Sarjaks.
  • Hindi: Kharuba, Safed Damar, Sundras.
  • Marathi: Chandrusa, Dhoop, Dhup, Ral, Salaadeek.
  • Malayalam: Baine, Kundirukam, Kunthrikkappayin, Paini.
  • Telugu: Dhupa, Damara, Dhupa.
  • Kannada: Dhupa, Bilagaggala, Bilee Daamar, Bilee Guggula, Bili Guggulu, Bilidamaru, Bilidhoopa, Bilidhupa, Bilidupa.
  • Tamil: Dhup-maram, Painimaram.
  • Urdu: Guggul, Kahruba Shamai.



The vateria indica tree is also known as the "Indian copal tree" and "dhupa". It is a large evergreen tree that can grow to more than 15 meters in height. It's timber is used in the manufacturing of matches and plywood and it's leaves have medicinal uses. The bark is used in the Gur industry and in internal medicine as a treatment for malarial fever. The resin secreted from the tree trunk is well known commercially as white damar; it is used in varnish, candles, ointments, medicines and incense.[2] The bark is grayish and smooth. Young branchlets are round and hairy and exude a resinous substance. The leaves are simple and spirally arranged. Stipples are caduceus-shaped. Leaf-stalks are 2-3.5 cm long, swollen at apex and nearly hairless. Leaves are 8-27 x 4.5–10 cm by size and elliptic-oblong. The tip of the leaf is abruptly long-pointed or blunt. The leaf base varies from rounded to heart-shaped. Leaf surface is leathery and hairless. Leaf Midrib is flat above, and secondary nerves appear in 13-20 pairs. Flowers are borne in panicles in the leaf axis. Flowers have dense stellate hairs, and are white with yellow anthers. The capsule is pale brown, 3-valved and oblong. The size of the capsule is 6.4 x 3.8 cm. Sepals are persistent of seed[3] Flowering starts between January and March. The fruits ripen from May to July. The fruit yield is typically 400 to 500 kg per hectare. A good crop appears every 3 to 5 years with 1 to 2 poor seasons and 1 to 2 average seasons in between.


Dhupa kernels are approximately 47% of the fruit with the average kernel weighing 55 grams. The color of the kernel is reddish white or green and has a thick brown covering/hull and a hard, brittle, aromatic nature. The moisture content in a fresh kernel will be around 41-47% and also contain 19-23% of pale yellow fat/oil having a tallow-like consistency that turns white overtime. Kernels are generally dried in sunlight or by steam to enable extraction of the fat/oil, which is generally around 25% of the dried kernel by weight.

Collection and Processing[edit]

The seed is collected immediately after the fruit falls down to avoid germination in the wet soil and infestation by worms. Usually it takes 4–5 weeks to collect and it is done by hand. Germ is removed by hand and fruits are decorticated by wooden mallets; the kernels are broken and sterilized in the process. Kernels are dried by agitating in a layer of 4–5 feet in a Godown, under the sun. The kernel is disintegrated to 6–7 mm size and crushed first through an expeller; 8-9% oil is recovered from the seed, then the oil cake is processed in solvent extraction to yield total oil from the oil cake.

Oil and fat[edit]

Vateria indica oil is known as Piney tallow or Dhupa fat. Dhupa oil contains saturated fatty acids more than 55.0%. Hence, the oil remains solid at lower temperature, so the oil is known as fat. In the fat stearic acid is present up to 40-45% and palmitic acid up to 10-13%. Oleic acidis present up to 43-48%. The Linoleic acid content is merely 0.5%. At the same time, Arachadic acid, a saturated fatty acid, with 20 carbons is present up to 5.0%.

Fatty Acid Composition[2][4]

Fatty Acid Percentage
Myristic acid(C14:0) 0.0-1.0
Palmitic acid(C16:0) 9.7-13.0
stearic Acid(C18:0) 38.0-45.0
Arachidic acid 0.4-4.6
Oleic Acid 42.0-48.0
Linoleic Acid 0.2-2.3
Linolenic acid up to 0.5

The Dhupa fat is greenish yellow to white, fairly soft with pleasant odor. It can be bleached by exposure to light.

Specification For Dhupa Fat[2][5]

character range
Refractive index at 600C 1.4577-1.4677
Iodine Value 36-51
Saponification Value 186-193
Unsaponifiable matter 1.0-2.0
Titer 530C min

Uses of oil[edit]

  • Refined Fat is obtained after chemical conventional refining, and it is edible. It is used as a component for filling, as Cocoa Butter Substitute/Extender after proper processing, as well as in yarn-sizing and manufacture of candles, soaps and other cosmetics.[6]
  • It is used for edible purposes after refining. It is used in confectionary and as an adulterant of ghee.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Plant Details". Retrieved 2013-11-21. 
  2. ^ a b c d SEA Hand Book-2009.By The Solvent Extractors' Association of No:911
  3. ^ "Vateria indica - White Damar". Retrieved 2013-11-21. 
  4. ^ "Fatty Acid Composition Of Some Major Oils". Retrieved 2013-11-21. 
  5. ^ "IS 8879 (1980): Dhupa Fat (FAD 13: Oils and Oilseeds)". Retrieved 2013-11-21. 
  6. ^ "Welcome to Manorama Group". Retrieved 2013-11-21. 
  7. ^ "Welcome to Pilikula Nisarga Dhama". Retrieved 2013-11-21. 

External links[edit]