Rapeseed is an annual oilseed crop. Rapeseed fruits produce small black seeds containing up to 40-45% oil.
Rapeseed is used to restructure soils and acts as a nitrate boost thanks to its deep roots. Rapeseed cultivation is interesting to alternate with wheat because rapeseed breaks the cycle of certain diseases specific to cereals.
Products and Uses
The oil, extracted by pressing, can be used in various ways:
- For food consumption;
- As fuel for the production of electricity (and heat in CHP plants) in adapted engines. Oil used in this case will be called pure vegetable oil (PVO);
- As fuel for suitable tractors (in its PVO form) or as raw material for biodiesel production;
- As bio-based products including biolubricants, which can be used as a chainsaw lubricant for example, or biosurfactants or biosolvents in some cases.
Oil cakes, which are the solid residues obtained after oil extraction, are rich in proteins and omega 3 and can be used for feeding animals. They can also be used in combustion to produce heat.