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Monitoring of seed composition of prickly pear

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Prickly pear fruit seeds were subjected to a range of chemical analyses during their 15 week maturation period. Seeds contained on average 71.5 g kg−1 dry matter, 61.9 g kg−1 crude oil, 9.4 g kg−1 protein, 507.4 g kg−1 crude fibre, 12.3 g kg−1 ash and 409.0 g kg−1 carbohydrate. The fatty acid composition of prickly pear seed oil consisted of 1.3–1.9 g kg−1 myristic (14:0), 132.1–156.0 g kg−1 palmitic (16:0), 14.4–18.5 g kg−1 palmitoleic (16:1), 33.1–47.9 g kg−1 stearic (18:0), 210.5–256.0 g kg−1 oleic (18:1), 522.5–577.6 g kg−1 linoleic (18:2), 2.9–9.7 g kg−1 linolenic (18:3), 4.2–6.6 g kg−1 arachidic (20:0) and 2.1–3.0 g kg−1 behenic (22:0) acids, which is comparable with that of corn oil. No statistical difference in seed weight ratio was determined during the maturation period, whereas changes in the saturated fatty acids of the seed oil were observed. From this study it can be concluded that the seeds of prickly pear are suitable as animal feed. Copyright © 2003 Society of Chemical Industry
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Keywords: fatty acids; maturation period; prickly pear (Opuntia ficus‐indica L); seed composition; seed development

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Food Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Ankara, Dışkapı, Ankara 06110, Turkey

Publication date: June 1, 2003

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