• Supercritical fluid extraction;
  • ultrasonic extraction;
  • vitamin E isomers;
  • tocopherols;
  • fatty acids;
  • amaranth oil;
  • Amaranthus caudatus


Supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) of seeds of Amaranthus caudatus (Amaranthaceae) and the use of ultrasound as a co-adjuvant in the extraction process were compared with methods traditionally used in the extraction of tocopherols and fatty acids. The use of readily available ultrasound equipment as an adjunct to the classical methods employed for the extraction of tocols provided qualitatively acceptable results more rapidly and more economically. SFE gave quantitatively better yields in shorter times, with solvent-free extracts obtained under conditions that minimised the degradation of thermolabile components. No significant variations were observed in the profile of the fatty acids extracted from amaranth oil by SFE or other methods, thus confirming the qualitative comparability of the faster supercritical extraction with the more time-consuming classical techniques even when processed with the aid of ultrasound. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.