Summer 2012 Newsletter
Hazelnut Oil Shows Market Opportunities
The Industrial Agricultural Products Center (IAPC) at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln analyzed oil from the top 20 producers out of 5,200 genetically distinct hybrid hazelnut shrubs from Hybrid Hazelnut Consortium partner Arbor Day Foundation.
Evaluating and characterizing hazelnut and its individual components (nuts, kernels, oil, meal, and shells) pointed to new opportunities for value-added products from hazelnut production.
Tests show that opportunities exist to expand into new markets for hazelnuts, particularly as animal feed and biodiesel.
Key findings from IAPC's analysis are:
High oil content makes Nebraska hybrid hazelnuts a potentially sustainable and alternative oilseed for human consumption and value-added industrial applications. The Hybrid Hazelnut Consortium believes hazelnuts merit investigation and development as a sustainable and high-yielding feedstock for biodiesel and other oleochemicals.
Hazelnut Harvest Begins Early
Nebraska Forest Service personnel began harvesting hazelnuts mid-August, 7-10 days earlier than usual, because of the severe drought conditions in the Midwest. "The hazelnut plants survived the hot, dry summer, but the nuts are much smaller this year," said Troy Pabst, forestry property manager for the Nebraska Forest Service.
Developing hybrid hazelnuts that can survive weather extremes and produce commercial-quality nuts is one of the major challenges facing the Hybrid Hazelnut Consortium partners. This summer was an excellent test for the current crop of hazelnut plants, Pabst said.