Edible oil refining process systems

Refining crude oil into edible oil requires deep process knowledge—from degumming, neutralization and dewaxing through to bleaching, deodorizing and GE and 3-MCPD mitigation. Edible oil producers worldwide rely on Alfa Laval know-how to remove impurities and volatile components and optimize refining processes. Count on us to ensure optimal taste, aroma, stability, appearance and nutritional value of your edible oils while maximizing product quality, safety and yield.

Oil flowing

Highly reliable, versatile, easy-to-operate systems for quality edible oils

  • Broad range of robust, reliable and easy-to-operate components, equipment and systems for edible oil processing
  • Knowledge and practical expertise to incorporate equipment into applications and innovative solutions
  • Vast experience in edible oil processing system design, installation, commission, service and support
  • High product quality and yield, low product loss and utility consumption
Alfa Laval is fully responsible and I don't have to worry about a thing." - Henk Vedder, Maintenance Manager, Cargill, Amsterdam.
Alfa Laval experts really know what to do, how to repair things and how to deal with the problems. We insist on always going back to Alfa Laval for after-sales service. - Haji Matan Ibrahim, Mill Manager/Chief Engineer of Kilang Sawit Bukit Bandi. 
We get regular support from Alfa Laval team. We are happy with the Alfa Laval team.” - Ramhari Gaikwad, technical manager, Shalimar Nutrients.


Get the most out of your crude oil with time-tested edible oil refining process solutions that optimize quality, ensure food safety and maximize yield

Alfa Laval holds more than 3700 patents, of which some 140 are specifically for edible oil systems. We continuously invest in R&D to enhance core components and equipment with innovative technology that optimizes our customers processes.

Whether you need complete systems to refine for edible oils or components and equipment to upgrade your existing process lines, you can rest assured we have your back. What you get is optimal design, reliability, ease of use, higher product quality, lower product losses and costs, minimized waste, global expertise and local service. All of which contribute to higher earnings and lower lifecycle costs.

Our edible oil production process line portfolio

After oil clarification (for pressed oils), the oil can be refined as shown below.

Edible oil process line

The crude oil is then transferred either to special degumming in the physical refining route, to water degumming, or directly to neutralization in the chemical refining route. In the chemical refining route, free fatty acids undergo a reaction to create aqueous soap, which is removed from the oil in centrifuges. The physical refining route removes only some impurities (mostly phosphatides, also known as phospholipids or gums) from the oil. Some oils, such as sunflower and corn, go through a dewaxing step to achieve the prescribed cold stability, that is, to be able to retain clarity at low temperature. The bleaching process removes additional impurities, such as metals, soap residues and colour components. Finally, to prolong shelf life, the oil undergoes deodorization to initiate thermal decomposition of residual colour, any components lending unwanted taste, and peroxides. Volatile compounds (mostly fatty acids) are removed via steam stripping at about 240 – 260°C under vacuum. Fatty acid distillate is produced as a valuable by-product in the physical refining route, much less so for the chemical refining route.

Last but not least, take advantages of our Utility Process Systems to further cutting operational costs in your edible oil refinery plants by reducing utility expenses – whether power, process water, steam, fuel and/or cooling media. 


  • More than 500 refineries (with neutralization/degumming, bleaching, deodorization)
  • More than 140 dewaxing plants
  • More than 75 dry fractionation plants
  • More than 50 hydrogenation plants
  • More than 30 interesterification plants


See an extensive list of peer-reviewed publications by Alfa Laval's experienced experts. 


Our customers:

Core Alfa Laval edible oil refinery equipment:

Webinars for the Edible Oil industry

Our experts share know-how to optimize edible oil refining processes, remove impurities and volatile components for better product quality, safety and yield.

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