Effect Of Different Solvent Types On The Yield Of Oil From Avocado Pear Seed

Project and Seminar Material for Chemical Engineering

Effect Of Different Solvent Types On The Yield Of Oil From Avocado Pear Seed


This work is focused on determining the effect of different solventtype on the yield of oil obtained from Avocado Pear seed (Perseaamericana). The parameters investigated are solvent type and time of extraction. The solvents used in this work are n-hexane, chloroform and diethylether. Samples of the seed of the fruit were subjected to drying at room temperature for seven (7) days followed by oven drying at 85oC before the sizes were reduced to 600µm. Under this condition, the effects of the above parameters on the yield were investigated in order to determine the optimum parameters. The results showed that the fruit (avocado pear seed)gave a higher yield of oil when it was soaked for three (3) days (72.00hours) compared to 14.24 hours. The highest yield of oil was obtained from a sample that was soaked with diethyl ether. The optimum conditions obtained for the yield of oil was obtained at the following conditions of 72.00 hours and diethyl ether as extraction time and solvent type.

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the Study

Vegetables and fruits are essential foods in our diet and also have many compounds that are beneficial for health due to minor components which include phenolic substances (Francisco et al., 2012). The consumption of the tropical-subtropical fruit, avocado, has increased considerably in the last century throughout Nigeria. There seems to be potential for further increases in consumption in the future (Manuela, 2011).Nowadays, great importance has been attached to oils from fruits and seeds, this is because of their numerous functions and uses to mankind. Fats and oils from seeds act as insulators to the body. They serve as protective layer or covering for the internal organs such as heart and lung. They also serve as sources of energy to the body in the absence of carbohydrates (Akpabio et al., 2011).

Persea americana, commonly known as Avocado, is a fruit that contains a high value of oil and chlorophyll concentration which when extracted results to an oil of emerald green color (Genevive et al., 2013). The avocado fruit is rich in nutrients, high in proteins, antioxidants and dietary fiber is perhaps the most poorly conceived and misunderstood fruit of all times. This is mainly attributed to its high fat and calorie content and so most nutritionists and dieticians either advise against it or to use it “sparingly” (Kuinimeri, 2007). The presence of a ‘tree factor’ and C7 sugars has been hypothesized to act as inhibitors in the repining process of avocado fruit. Additionally, the content of sugars seems to decrease with fruit maturity. Also, in exceptional cases, avocados do not ripen until harvested although maturity does increase while the fruit remains on the tree (Manuela, 2011).

There had been many studies regarding the extraction of avocado pulp. Most of these have indicated the high amount of oleic acid present in avocado. Oleic acid is said to be an effective aid to lower serum cholesterol levels and low-density lipoproteins in the human body (Genevive et al., 2013). However, with the abundant production of avocado apple in Nigeria, 15% of avocado pear (pericarp/peels) is discarded as waste which ought to have been a potential source for the production of oils for industrial applications, specifically, the fruits’ pericarp that are reported to have antiviral, antibiotic and insecticidal properties and employed as a vermifuge and remedy for dysentery and in the production of cosmetics (Adama and Edoga, 2011).

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Nowadays, great importance has been attached to oils from fruits and seeds, this is because of their numerous functions and uses to mankind. Due to this fact the demand for avocado oil has increased. This work will therefore focus on improving the production of the oil in large quantities to meet up the demand by investigating some parameters that would enhance better production.

1.3 Aim

The aim of this work is to study the effect of solvent type and extraction time on the yield of Avocado pear seed oil using solvent extraction method.

The objectives of this work are:

  1. To carry out seed preparation
  2. To carry out solvent extraction process using soaking method
  3. Finding out the oil yield of avocado pear by varying the solvent type and extraction time

1.4 Scope of the Study

This study will be conducted on the seed of an Avocado Pear (Persea americana) and the method to be employed will be carried out in the laboratory using soaking method with hexane, diethyl ether and chloroform as solvents in determining the best possible yield with varying time intervals.

1.5 Relevance of the Study

This study will give a full knowledge of the parameters to consider when carrying out a commercial production of oil from avocado pear seed in order to get a better yield. With this information, the production of avocado oil from the seed will be optimized by choosing the best solvent required for maximum extraction. This will provide better parameters to be used in the conversion of seed as a form of waste to useful products.

Chapter Five

Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Conclusion

From the analysis of the results, the conclusions drawn are as follows; Good amount of oil could be obtained from the seed of the avocado pear which up to now is discarded as waste. It’s known that the rate of extraction was known to proceed favorably with increasing time. The results of this work using soaking method extraction process are supportive of that fact. The oil yield increase with each parameter investigated. Though there is always an optimum values for each parameter investigated increasing the parameter beyond this optimum value does not result to any appreciable increase in the oil extracted. The optimum values for extraction time and solvent type are 72hours and 1.19% for diethyl ether.

5.2 Recommendations

As a result of the above conclusions, it is recommended that the comparative study of parameters affecting oil yield from avocado pear seed should be carried out using a soxhlet extractor to ascertain the possibility of getting maximum yield using diethyl ether which could be used for extraction in a commercial scale since soaking method is time consuming. A mechanical screw press could also be used to know the effect of these parameters on the seed without the use of a solvent which must be distilled from the extracts thereby causing the production of this oil in a commercial scale to be economical. Also since the seed from the pear is a waste, a further study could be conducted on the peels to know if oil could be extracted from it thereby reducing wastes in the environment to a minimal level.

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