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Global consumption of vegetable oils from 1995/1996 to 2013/2014, by oil type (in million metric tons)

 Palm oilSoybean oilCanola oilSunflower oilOther
1995/1996 15.8 19.7 11.2 8.6 16.4
2005/2006 35.3 33.6 16.9 9.8 19.8
2006/2007 37.7 35.6 17.6 10.3 20
2007/2008 39.4 37.5 18.3 9.4 20.5
2008/2009 42.1 36 20.1 10.6 20.9
2009/2010 44.5 38.3 22.4 11.4 21.2
2010/2011 47.9 40.7 23.5 11.8 22.5
2011/2012 50.9 41.3 23.8 13.1 23.7
2012/2013 54.3 42.5 23.6 13.6 23.9
2013/2014* 56.3 44.4 24.5 14.5 24.2
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This statistic shows the global consumption of vegetable oils from 1995/1996 to 2013/2014, by oil type. In 2005/2006, sunflower oil consumption amounted to 9.8 million metric tons.

Vegetable oils

Vegetable oils are oils or fats extracted from a plant. Their texture can be described as liquid, oily and fatty. Most vegetable oils are able to fulfill two functions: they can either be used as cooking oil or for fuel and diesel production. The most common oil types include palm oil, soybean oil, canola oil and sunflower oil. Palm oil is extracted from the flesh of the palm fruit, which is primarily found in the tropical climate of Africa, South America and South East Asia. It is estimated that about 90 percent of palm oil is used for food consumption, whereas industrial consumption such as cosmetic products or fuel and diesel claim the remaining 10 percent.

In terms of consumption as a food product, vegetable oils are seen as the healthier alternative as they contain more unsaturated fatty acids than animal fats. One of the most widely used cooking oils is canola oil, also known as rapeseed oil. It is obtained by extraction from the rapeseed, which is first slightly heated and then crushed. Canola oil, in particular, is seen to have the advantages of containing a higher amount of omega-3 (linolenic acid) and omega-6 (linoleic) fatty acids and to be low in saturated fatty acids. In 2012/2013 the global canola oil consumption amounted to 23.6 million metric tons, up from 11.2 million metric tons in 1995/1996.

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