Posted on 07. Sep, 2009 by funlayo.
Milling is done after the crushed shea nuts are roasted and cooled. Milling breaks the nuts down to finer particles in preparation for the next step of extraction.
Posted on 04. Sep, 2009 by funlayo.
The roasting of the crushed nuts serves to soften the nuts and make the next steps of oil the extraction easier. I have seen the roasting of shea nuts done in two ways. The crushed nuts are roasted in an open pan, or they are placed into a roaster as shown below. Both ways are fine as long as there is no burning.
Posted on 03. Sep, 2009 by funlayo.
Throughout the shea butter producing areas of West Africa, producers employ different methods in drying their shea nuts. Most use the traditional sun drying methods while others use the traditional ovens.
Posted on 02. Sep, 2009 by funlayo.
Sun drying is the process of drying crops in the open, but it’s not very effective. Flies, other insects and debris intrude. It is preferable for drying to be done in a controlled environment, utilizing the sun to heat the air before it is passed through stacks of grains.
Posted on 31. Aug, 2009 by funlayo.
Drying is a critical step in the production process. The nuts must be thoroughly dried in order to produce good quality shea butter. One of the characteristics of good shea butter is a low moisture content.
Posted on 30. Aug, 2009 by funlayo.
After the nuts are boiled the hard outer shell is cracked to extract the shea kernel. Kernels that are extracted directly out of the nut do not need to be washed.
Posted on 29. Aug, 2009 by funlayo.
After the nuts are harvested, they are steeped in boiling hot water for about 30 minutes.The boiling process is another important step to ensuring that the end product is of the highest quality.
Posted on 28. Aug, 2009 by funlayo.
The key to quality shea butter is the process that begins from the moment the shea nut is harvested until the shea butter is extracted from the nut. If the process is compromised, the resulting shea butter will not meet the standards the buyer desires.
Posted on 23. Aug, 2009 by funlayo.
The key to quality shea butter begins with the processing of the shea nut. For best results, it is recommended that the fruits are boiled within the first week of collection.
Posted on 21. Aug, 2009 by funlayo.
My first visit to a shea producers cooperative was the Women’s Shea Butter Cooperative in Ipapo Nigeria. Ipapo is located in the Shea belt in South Western Nigeria. I arrived at the beginning of the harvest season in April. This cooperative starts harvesting shea nuts earlier than most parts of the shea producing areas in Nigeria.