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To help you discover the world of organic and oilseeds, we have put together a glossary that provides explanations of terms or expressions in the organic and oil sectors.

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  • Apricot kernels: The apricot tree is a member of the Rosaceae family. Relatively small, it likes temperate zones but remains well adapted to continental climates. Throughout Europe, in temperate and Mediterranean climates, entire orchards are dedicated to it. The fruits and their kernels that are used for medicinal, food or magical practices. Apricot kernels contain an almond that accounts for 20% of their weight and contains 40 to 50% oil. This is extracted by first cold pressing from the dried almonds.
  • Argan: An oil typically found in the hills of southwest Morocco, made from berries picked by Berber women. It is an oil rich in unsaturated fatty acids, mainly oleic and linoleic acid Omega 6. It has an excellent nutty taste.
  • Avocado: The avocado belongs to the Lauraceae family. Its cultivation has spread to all tropical and subtropical regions. More than 200 varieties are known. The avocado tree grows 5 to 15 m tall. This tree is very commonly cultivated. A number of species are marketed. Its trunk is covered with greyish and cracked bark, and its top is wide and bushy. It leaves are evergreen, simple, oval and bright dark green. The seed is a large brown stone. Both the fruit and the leaves are used. Avocado vegetable oil is extracted from the fruit of the avocado tree. The pulp (60 to 75% of the fruit) has a remarkably high oil content (5 to 30% depending on the variety), while avocado kernels contain little oil (< 2%).
  • Baobab: A native of Africa, the baobab is a tropical tree of the Bombacaceaes family. The tree, with its stout trunk and soft wood, full of water, has a characteristic appearance and lives for a long time. Some of them are thousands of years old. It is generally quite massive and can reach 25m high and more than 12m in diameter with a crown of irregular branches and is devoid of leaves for nine months out of twelve. Adansonia digitata has a unique botanical character in the genus Adansonia: pendulous white flowers, unlike other erect flowering species. The smooth, grey fibrous bark, sometimes irregularly tuberculated, is used to make ropes and cordage. The fruit of the baobab tree (also known as monkey bread) is oblong in shape, about 100mm in diameter and 200mm long.It contains small seeds with a tangy taste that can be pressed to obtain oil.
  • BIOPARTENAIRE®: Innovative label with a highly ambitious vision, created by organic pioneers who continue to defend the values that have been the foundation of organic farming and wish to show another way and another vision of trade by putting people back at the heart of the business.
    In 2002, several pioneering organic business leaders came together for a common cause: committed, sustainable, fair trade partnerships in organic agriculture.
  • Borage: Borage, Borago officinalis, is a herbaceous plant that has long been known for its medicinal properties.
  • Camelina: Camelina, Camelina sativa, also known as bastard flax or German sesame is an annual plant of the cruciferous family. The oil content of the seeds varies from 30 to 41%. Camelina oil is an excellent source of Omega 3.
  • Coconut: The coconut is the fruit of the coconut tree, Cocos nucifera, one of the representatives of the palm family or Arecaceae. The whole fruit grows up to 30 centimetres in diameter. It has a smooth, light green exterior when the fruit is not ripe, turning brown when ripe. Underneath there is a thick, brown and tough layer of woody fibre that is characteristic of the fruit. The whitish inner layer of the fruit is edible. It is pressed and dried to obtain the oil.
  • Cold extract: An appellation intended for virgin or extra-virgin olive oil, which is obtained only by mechanical processes without the temperature exceeding 27° C, by a percolation process, or by putting the olive paste through a centrifuge.
  • Combined or compound oil: These are carefully studied formulas composed of several different oils: a mixture of rapeseed, sesame, olive, pumpkin seeds for example.
  • Deodorisation: To give a more neutral taste to the oil, it is deodorised. The first cold-pressed virgin oil is deodorised by the injection of water vapour for organic products. In fact, the oil is deodorised using steam injection, under vacuum, between 110° and 150° C. The aromatic substances are separated by the steam and then removed, using a vacuum pump and a chiller.
  • Essential fatty acids: These are fatty acids that the body cannot produce. Only food can provide them. They are divided into two families of polyunsaturated fatty acids: Omega 3 and Omega 6.
  • Evening primrose: Evening primrose belongs to the order Myrtales and to the family of Onagraceae. The angular, 1 to 1.2 m plant, with its upright stance, does not grow above 700 m in altitude. It has large, sulphur-yellow flowers. Each stem bears many fruits. Evening primrose usually grows in the sun or semi-shade and on fairly sandy soils. The stem, where the fruits form, is quite straight. The leaves are long and veined, and have fine hairs. The flower is sulphur-yellow. The flower only opens at the end of the day around 18:00 and closes again 24 hours after opening. The stamens are curved. It flowers from June to September. After flowering the fruit, which measures about 2 to 3 cm., appears.
  • Extra virgin oil: This term is used exclusively for olive oil. It is a virgin oil with the lowest possible oleic acid content and the highest organoleptic value.
  • Filtration: Filtration allows us to remove impurities and waxes.
  • First cold pressing: This is a label reserved for oils that have not undergone any heat processes. The oils are obtained by simple mechanical pressure and are produced cold and filtered on blotting paper. This traditional process does not use chemical treatment or refining and does not denature the seeds.
  • Flax: Flax varieties are classified into oleaginous flax (seed flax) or fibre flax (fibre flax). The varieties differ in their seed or fibre yield, stem height, seed size, fibre quality etc.. Flax is produced in a great many areas of the world. This plant is grown on all continents with Canada, Argentina, India, and the United States as its main producers.
  • Fruité vert – Green and fruity: The term green and fruity means that the olfactory sensations are reminiscent of those of green fruits and which are characteristic of oil from green fruits.
  • Gourmet and culinary oil: To obtain more pronounced flavours and tastes, and develop their aromas, some nuts such as walnuts or hazelnuts are roasted or toasted. Then, they are pressed in a first cold pressing and filtered several times on blotting paper.
  • Grape seeds: The oil is extracted from the seeds of the grape, Vitis vinifera, whose fruits contain up to five seeds. To obtain one litre of oil you need 20 kg of grape seeds. The grapes are cultivated according to organic farming methods, meaning there is no use of chemical fertilisers, and that green manures and natural pest control are used.
  • Hazelnut: The hazelnut tree, Corylus avellana, from the Betuline family, produces a fruit very rich in oil: 50 to 65%. It is cultivated according to the organic farming methods.
  • Hemp: Hemp belongs to the large family of Cannabinaceae and the cannabis genus. There are several families of cannabis, and they differ from each other in the content of psychotropic substance in their seeds . Virgin hemp oil is very rich in Omega 3 (15 to 20%) and Omega 6 (57%).
  • Jojoba: Jojoba is a thick and bushy shrub that grows in arid and semi-arid regions. It can reach a height of 5 metres. It is a tap-rooted plant; and this main root ensures the anchoring and storage of the plant’s reserves. The jojoba’s root system maintains the soil . It also provides the plant with resistance to severe drought conditions, to such an extent that it can withstand a year and a half without a supply of water. The leaves are oval, tough and hairy on both sides. The young leaves are soft green or grey and then turn greenish yellow. Jojoba is a dioecious species, meaning that male and female flowers appear on separate plants. There are as many male plants as there are female plants. The female flowers are isolated and pale green in colour. The male flowers are small and yellow, and arranged in clusters of flower heads. Flowering begins in March/April. The fruit is a capsule and it develops in July/August.
  • Lipids: Lipids are more than 95% composed of molecules called triglycerides. The remaining 5% represents the sum of various compounds that can also be very beneficial for our diet (tocopherols)
  • Macadamia: Macadamia nuts (Macadamia Integrifolia) come from a tropical tree that grows in Australia, Hawaii and Kenya. Only a tropical climate will support their production. The nuts are covered by a green envelope that splits to reveal the brown shell when it matures. Macadamia oil has a pleasant nutty taste and a high content of monounsaturated fatty acids.
  • Mono-unsaturated fatty acid: Mono-unsaturated fatty acids contain a single double bond.
  • Muscat Rose: Muscat rose is widespread in southern Chile where it finds the climate and soil particularly conducive to its growth. The Muscat rose bush is a shrub related to the Rosaceae family. It is a shrub with an average height of 3.5 metres, and its climbing and particularly thorny branches can reach up to 10 metres in length. It resembles a rosehip, grows naturally on the American continent and is grown extensively in Chile. It produces musk roses, single, white or pink flowers, which result in the formation of fruits extremely rich in vitamin C. After pollination, the “fruit” (a false fruit called a rosehip) develops into an ovoid form. Its colour, initially green, turns yellow, orange and then red when ripe.
  • Nigella (Black Cumin): Nigella, Nigella sativa, from the Renunculaceae family, is a plant known throughout the world, used in China, India and the Arab world. This plant produces small aromatic seeds of an intense black colour. It is an annual herbaceous plant, growing 60 cm tall, with sharply cut, feathery leaves. Its flowers are light blue, veined with green and cut. Its fruits are in the form of globular capsules that are harvested before full maturity in order to keep the seeds contained. These aromatic seeds are triangular, angular, of an intense black colour, 2 to 3 mm long.
  • Oil of (name of seed or fruit): This is the oil of a single variety of seed or fruit that has undergone extraction and refining operations.
  • Oleic acid: Oleic acid is part of Omega 9, so it is a mono-unsaturated fatty acid.
  • Oleic sunflowers: The oleic sunflower is a sunflower “hybrid”, Helianthus annuus L., essentially rich in monounsaturates (oleic acid). Selection has quickly resulted in seeds containing more than 50% oleic acid, rich in vitamin E and having a good balance with polyunsaturated fatty acids. Today, hybrids of oleic sunflower (still sometimes called “oleïsols”) are available for cultivation.
  • Olive: The Olive tree is part of the Oleaceae family. The genius is Olea, and the most important species is Olea europaea. It will adapt to drought, and it grows in countries with a Mediterranean climate. The olive trees are cultivated according to organic farming methods, meaning there is no use of chemical fertilisers, and that green manures and natural pest control are used.
  • Organic agriculture: Organic agriculture does not use chemicals, and working methods are based on the recycling of natural organic materials and crop rotation. Production methods must also be compliant and monitored so that the finished products can be described as organic.
  • Organic product: A product derived from organic farming must result from an agricultural production method that is free of synthetic chemicals. Production methods must therefore be monitored so that products can obtain organic certification and the AB label.
  • Perilla: Perilla, Perilla fructescens, a member of the Labiatae or Lamiacae family, the mint, rosemary and basil family, is grown and consumed in Asia. Perilla is an aromatic herb used in Japanese cuisine, especially for Tempura. This plant is also used for its leaves, seeds and flower buds. An annual plant 45 to 60 cm high, it grows in full sunlight in a humid atmosphere. The leaves are green to purple depending on the varieties, oval and opposed. The flowers, purple through to white, appear in spikes at the end of summer. The plant contains 0.2% essential oil which gives it its fragrance, a mixture of basil, tarragon and oriental fragrances.
  • Polyunsaturated fatty acid: Polyunsaturated fatty acids contain at least two double bonds, for example, C18:2; C18:3 etc.
  • Pumpkin seeds: The pumpkin, Cucurbita pepo, is a member of the Cucurbitaceae family. Pumpkin seeds are used as they are in food or in the production of oil.
  • Rapeseed: The general term rapeseed refers to a group of oilseeds belonging to the botanical genus Brassica of the cruciferous family. Rapeseed is widely grown in Europe, Canada and China. Rapeseed oil is extremely rich in omega 3 and well balanced in omega 6.
  • Safflower: Safflower, Carthamus tinctorius, is a member of the Asteraceae family of species. Originally from the East, it is grown in the United States, Argentina and Australia. Safflower oil is rich in vitamin E and contains Omega 6.
  • Saturated fatty acid: Saturated fatty acids are fatty acids that have no double bonds.
  • Sesame: Sesame, Sesamum indicum, is a herbaceous plant of the Pedaliaceae family. The very ancient sesame culture extends from West Africa, from the Middle East to Central America. The seeds used at Huilerie Emile Noël come exclusively from Mali (Africa) and are grown according to the organic farming method, in other words, no use of chemical fertilisers but on the contrary, the use of green manures, crop rotation and natural pest control.
  • Shea butter: Shea butter, Butyrospermum parkii, family Sapotaceae (Vitellaria Pardoxa variety), comes from trees that grow wild and are untreated. They are extremely long-lived and bear fruit from the fifteenth year onwards. The fruits are fleshy and grouped in bunches of green ovoid shapes.
  • Sherry: A dry white wine from Spain.
  • Sweet almond: The almond tree, Prunus amygdalus, belongs to the Rosaceae family. Its fruit contains one or two almonds with an oil content of between 50 and 65%.
  • Soya : Soya is an annual herbaceous plant of the legume family. Originally from China. Today, soya is grown in the USA, Europe, and South America. The plant is entirely covered with fine grey or brown hairs. The erect stems are 30 to 130 cm long. The leaves are trifoliate (rarely carrying 5 leaflets) and are reminiscent of the general shape of bean leaves.
  • Sunflower: Sunflower, Helianthus annuus L., belongs to the Asteraceae family of compounds and to the genus Helianthus. Originally from North America, the sunflower is now grown in Russia, Argentina, France, Italy, India, China etc. The seeds used at Huilerie Emile Noël come mainly from France.
  • Triglyceride: This is the combination of one glycerol molecule with three fatty acids. It is the nature of these fatty acids that makes it possible to differentiate vegetable oils.
  • Vegetable oil: This is an oil created from a blend of edible vegetable oils.
  • Vitamin E: This is a natural antioxidant, which protects cells against oxidative stress.
  • Virgin (name of seed or fruit) oil: This is the oil of a single variety of seed or fruit obtained only by mechanical processes, clarified exclusively by physical means and not subjected to any chemical treatment or refining (no use of solvents).
  • Walnuts: The common walnut, Juglans regia, belongs to the Juglandacae family. Originally from Persia and the Caucasus, its culture has spread to Europe and especially to France. The seeds are grown according to organic farming methods, which means no use of chemical fertilisers or pesticides but, on the contrary, the use of green manures.
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