Useful efficiency: why fast food and confectionery companies benefit from using high oleic sunflower oil

In the Russian HoReCa market there is a shift in demand towards professional products designed to meet the needs of food service operators, which have additional properties and thus guarantee high operational efficiency in use. This trend can be seen in virtually all market segments, including the vegetable oil category. “Professional oils and blends are objectively more profitable from an operational point of view than ordinary sunflower oil. That’s why the HoReCa market will move towards increased consumption of functional products,” confirms Irina Osokina, Lead Brand Manager of Rusagro’s Industrial Fats division.


Functional products in the vegetable oil category include, for example, high oleic sunflower oil (HOO). Such oil is produced from special sunflower varieties characterized by a high content of oleic acid – over 75%. Moreover, it is high oleic sunflower oil that has a really big potential today in terms of sales in Russian HoReCa. And supporting the high interest in the product is the active growth of the fast food restaurant segment (26% in 2021-2022, according to Romir). In the fast food segment, deep-fried dishes such as French fries and chicken nuggets are showing dynamic growth, which in turn supports demand in the HoReCa market for professional frying oils and blends.

As for high oleic sunflower oil, the key advantage of the product is its high oxidative stability compared to conventional sunflower oil due to its high oleic acid content of at least 75%. And it’s one of the highest in the vegetable oil category. This means that such oil is resistant to chemical processes leading to changes in its composition and properties, it does not smoke and does not foam, has a clean taste, without extraneous flavors and odors. In addition, for example, SOLPRO high oleic sunflower oil preserves the natural properties of the fried product (primarily juiciness and texture) and does not change its taste, allows you to get a golden color of finished products when deep frying. Due to its beneficial properties, such oil is ideal for baby food.

High oleic sunflower oil also has great potential in the segment of confectionery and bakeries, as well as coffee shops, which are also developing particularly actively today. “The volume of confectionery production does increase year on year, which is mainly due to the trend towards snackification (consumers have started to snack more often and replace full meals with snacks), as well as the active development of domestic tourism, which supports a consistently high demand for confectionery,” comments Irina Osokina.

Pastry chefs and bakers choose PTO as a key ingredient for making muffins and cupcakes and for frying the doughnuts, churros and donuts so popular with restaurant guests. It is important to note that the high oxidation resistance of high oleic sunflower oil also works well in confectionery, as it allows to extend the shelf life of products. The use of such oil, as noted by professional confectioners, guarantees the juiciness of finished products and contributes to the maximum release of flavor and aroma of other ingredients, including spices, fruits and berries. In this way, operators are able to reduce their dosage in the recipe and thus optimize the consumption of expensive raw materials without losing the quality of the finished products. Finally, high oleic sunflower oil is characterized by a low saturated fatty acid content (less than 10%) and a complete absence of fatty acid trans-isomers – so important for end consumers. “Today, a part of consumers would like to see products with a composition without palm oil. And in the production of such products, high oleic sunflower oil finds its direct application,” adds Irina Osokina.

Chefs and confectioners appreciate PTO for its high content of unique oleic acid – up to 75%, which is equal to olive oil. Oleic acid belongs to the group of monounsaturated fatty acids. In fact, it is a key element of the daily human diet (the physiological requirement is 10% of the daily diet), necessary for normal metabolism and digestion. Fats with a high content of oleic acid are almost completely absorbed by the body, prevent the development of diseases of the cardiovascular system, improve mood and strengthen the immune system. That is why SOLPRO high oleic sunflower oil fully fits into the trend for a correct and balanced diet, the principles of which, according to a survey by Alfa Insurance, are now followed by at least 28.5% of consumers and are considered the main condition for healthy lifestyle. Of course, the effectiveness of the product in this case is improved if the operator communicates intelligently with consumers and tells them what ingredients he uses and why.

A guarantee of consistently high PTO quality and excellent consumer characteristics is the fact that such oil is produced from selective raw materials. “High oleic sunflower varieties are planted strictly at a distance from fields sown with conventional sunflower – to avoid cross-pollination,” Irina Osokina specifies. Such oil is expectedly more expensive to purchase, but has a number of obvious advantages, is characterized by functionality, economic and operational efficiency. After all, in the long run, the use of professional oils, including PTO, turns out to be more profitable compared to ordinary sunflower oil.

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