Application of Supercritical CO2 Extraction Technology in Plant Extracts


The supercritical CO2 extraction technology not only allows for one-time deacidification, decolorization, and deodorization in the extractor, but also uses CO2 as the extraction agent, ensuring environmental protection and no residue characteristics. Compared with traditional extraction methods, SFE has great advantages in the extraction of plant extracts and essential oils in terms of purity, yield, content of Active ingredient, color, aroma, etc. of plant extracts.


In recent years, with the gradual introduction of various natural concept cosmetics, consumers' demand for personal care products containing natural ingredients has been growing, and the role of plant extracts in cosmetics has become more and more important, which has also made the further in-depth need to optimize the safety and effectiveness of various extracts.


Supercritical CO2 extraction technology can not only deacidify, decolorize and deodorize in the extractor at one time, but also use CO2 as an extractant to ensure environmental protection and no residue. Compared with traditional extraction methods, SFE has great advantages in the extraction of plant extracts and essential oils in terms of purity, yield, active ingredient content, color and fragrance of plant extracts.


(1) From the purity of the extract product: Magnolia is an important Chinese medicinal material in China, and the main active ingredients are honokiol and honokiol. Due to its significant antibacterial and antioxidant effects, it can be used as a functional ingredient in food, health supplements, pharmaceuticals and daily chemical products. The traditional extraction process has the disadvantages of low yield, low purity and deep color.


Using supercritical CO2 extraction, after simple refining, the purity of its active ingredients can reach more than 98%. At present, supercritical CO2 extracted plant extracts, such as knotweed extract, cnidium monnieri extract, etc., after simple refining, the purity can reach more than 98%, and the industrial production of these extract products has been quite mature.


(2) In terms of improving the yield of extracts: licorice is the rhizome of legume perennial herbs, and its extraction components glycyrrhizic acid and licorice flavonoids are the preferred functional ingredients in cosmetics, and the high price of these two products makes engineers have to use other raw materials in some cosmetics to replace these two products. Compared with the traditional extraction method, it is found that the yield of glycyrrhizic acid extracted by supercritical CO2 extraction technology is 2-8 times that of the traditional extraction method, and the extraction rate of licorice flavonoids is also increased by 12-1.1 times, which also lays a solid foundation for the large-scale application of these two raw materials.


(3) In terms of removing the odor of plant extracts: spirulina is rich in protein and a variety of bioactive ingredients, and has good skin care ability in cosmetics. It has the ability to remove and weaken free radicals, so it can play an anti-wrinkle, sunscreen, anti-radiation, freckle removal, anti-aging and other effects. The traditional method of spirulina fish smell is heavier, and the active ingredients are reduced after deodorization, which limits the development of its deep processing. Supercritical CO2 extraction technology, combined with other extraction technologies, can solve the problem of removing fishy odor without reducing its active ingredients.


(4) Extraction of active ingredients and active substances in vegetable oil: the use of supercritical technology to extract pomegranate seed oil, pomegranate acid content of more than 80%, the results show that the supercritical CO2-extracted pomegranate seed oil is rich in conjugated unsaturated fatty acids, no solvent residue, light color, high nutritional value and other advantages.



The Company has committed to the field of supercritical fluid extraction equipment for 30 years.