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 Mahamad Rodzi Abdul Ghani
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 New soybean variety with half the saturated fat is

New soybean variety with half the saturated fat is in testingUSA(M2 PRESSWIRE) 7/19/2001 : A new soybean bred by Agricultural ResearchService scientists for the Southeast fulfills two of the food industry'swishes for heart-healthy soy oil.Oil from the new soybean has half the saturated fat of traditionalvarieties -- specifically, the undesirable palmitic acid. And its portionof the highly unstable polyunsaturated fat, linolenic acid, is at least 40percent lower. That should reduce or eliminate the need for hydrogenationin many frying and food-processing applications.Hydrogenation generates most of the trans fats in the food supply, andtrans fats appear to increase risk of cardiovascular disease much the sameas saturated fats do. So the food industry wants to avoid hydrogenationwherever possible.The new soybean is named Satelite -- pronounced "Sat-elite" because it is"elite" for saturated fat content, according to Richard F. Wilson. Hedirects soybean research at ARS' Soybean and Nitrogen Fixation ResearchUnit (www.ars- grin.gov/ars/SoAtlantic/Raleigh/snfr) in Raleigh, N.C.Satelite is the first low-linolenic-, low-palmitic-acid variety releasedfor the Southeast, according to ARS agronomist Joseph W. Burton, whodeveloped the variety by traditional breeding. Its oil also has more ofthe desirable monounsaturated fat, oleic acid, than traditional varieties-- about 40 percent more. But levels still don't meet the industry targetof 50 percent of total fat.Through North Carolina Foundation Seed Producers, ARS is releasing alimited amount of Satelite seed this year to North Carolina StateUniversity and selected local farmers, who will produce around 5,000bushels of beans, enough for oil processors and food companies to test.The United Soybean Board funded part of Satelite's development and isproviding $77,000 toward the seed increase.If the oil performs well in pilot tests, it could help food manufacturersreduce trans fats in their products. Food labels currently don't includetrans fats. But proposed Food and Drug Administration rules would requirethat manufacturers add the amount of trans fat in a serving -- if itexceeds 0.5 gram -- to the amount of saturated fat stated on the NutritionFacts panel. The amount of saturated fat and its percentage of the "dailyvalue" would reflect the sum of the two.ARS is the chief scientific research agency of the U.S. Department ofAgriculture.CONTACT: Judy McBride, ARS News Service Agricultural Research Service,USDA

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