"C6:0 means fatty acid has 6 carbons and 0 double bonds, C18:3 means fatty acid has 18 carbons and 3 double bonds, etc.

"C6:0 means fatty acid has 6 carbons and 0 double bonds, C18:3 means fatty acid has 18 carbons and 3 double bonds, etc.


Description. There is one species of coconut palm, Cocos nucifera L., but there are several geographical varieties. These are divided into two groups: the tall typica and the dwarf nana: The tall coconut palms can live longer than 80 yr. After an initial flowering period of 5-8 yr, they continuously produce from 80 to 150 nuts per year. The coconuts from this variety have high oil yields and good-quality fiber and copra (dried coconut meat). The dwarf varieties live for about 40 yr, producing fruit after their third year. These colorful palms produce coconuts with a tough copra unsuitable for commercial purposes and so are planted mainly as an ornamental. Coconuts consist of an outer husk covering a thin, hard shell that in turn covers the copra. The inner cavity of the copra contains a watery substance called milk. A ripe nut weighs 2-3 kg and is about 25 cm long.

Origin and Cultivation. Records indicate that the coconut palm has existed for more than 3,000 yr. Although some theories place its origin in Central or South America, it most likely originated in Southeast Asia (16). The coconut palm grows in tropical areas throughout the world; in the western hemisphere, it is found as far north as Florida and as far south as Brazil. India, Indonesia, and the Philippines are the main coconut-producing countries. Africa, Latin America, and Oceania also are significant producers.

Composition and Uses. The husk consists of fibers that have a variety of uses and comprise more than 50% of the nut's mass. The shell and the milk each make up about 12% of the mass and the copra accounts for about 18%.

More than 60% of the copra is a highly saturated oil. Because a large percentage of the oil's fatty acids is lauric (C12:0), coconut oil is known as a lauric acid oil. Although the oil has the greatest economic value, all parts of the coconut are used (16). The fibers from the husk, called coir, are used to make mats, nets, bags, ropes, and similar items. The shells are used to make activated carbon. The oil, extracted from the copra by crushing, is used in baking and in a variety of prepared foods. Of all the edible oils, coconut oil has the most nonedible uses. It is used in cosmetics, toiletries, and in the manufacture of soap by saponification. The glycerol by-product from soap manufacture is used in pharmaceuticals and in the manufacture of explosives. Coconut oil is used in the production of plasti-cizers, resins, detergents, and as a lubricant and fuel.


Description. Zea mays L. is a tall annual plant belonging to the grass family Graminese. Although it is commonly called maize throughout most of the world, it is referred to as corn in the United States and Canada. The female inflorescence, the ear, is where corn kernels are produced. Typically an ear of corn has about 800 kernels attached to its inner cylinder, called the cob (17). Kernels at either end of the ear are rounded whereas those at the center are flattened by pressure from adjacent kernels. An average kernel from the center of the ear is about 0.4 X 0.8 cm thick and about 1.2 cm long. Dent and sweet are two types of corn grown extensively in the United States. When drying, the center part of the dent corn kernel collapses making a distinct indentation. The sweet variety has mutant genes that retard the conversion of sugar to starch in the kernel.

Table 3. Amino Acid Composition of the Protein in the Various Oilseed Meals in Weight Percent
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