12/2012, Finished R&D Projects

Development of a new method for processing rice bran to a high-quality oil with a high content of γ-oryzanol

  • funding program: ZIM (BMWi)
  • term: 01.12.2012 – 31.10.2014
  • project partner: Maschinenfabrik Reinartz GmbH


Initial position:

Great quantities of rice bran are obtained in manufacturing white polished rice. It is mainly used in the animal feed industry. Alternatively, it could be used for oil production, mainly because of the high content of ɣ-oryzanol. That is a phytosterol only found in rice. It can reduce cholesterol and blood fat levels significantly and protect the cardiovascular system. In addition to use as cooking oil in food sector, companies from the cosmetic and pharmaceutical field are also interested.


A simple and gentle method for processing rice bran to high-quality oil should be developed. The process includes conditioning, pressing and refining followed by recovery of γ-oryzanol from the oil by short path distillation. Oryzanol has to be obtained under very mild conditions. Short path distillation is such a gentle method causing minor thermal damage.
The project partners have to optimize experimental parameters as well as dimensioning the plant design and plant components. In addition, structural details of technical equipment will be developed.


Rice oil was recieved by pressing rice bran. The received oil was refined physically. The different process steps, especially the deodorization, were optimized. The analysis of γ-oryzanol was performed using UV/Vis spectroscopy, which is a fast and simple method of analysis. The recovery of oryzanol extract by short path distillation could not be realized because the mixture could not be distilled due to a high boiling point, so it remained in the sump itself.

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