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Chapter 4

Comparison of Palm- and Tallow-Based Soaps:


Specifications, Formulations, and Performance
Ainie Kuntom and Luis Spitz
Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB), Malaysia; and L. Spitz, Inc., Skokie, Illinois, USA

Introduction
Soap is one of the oldest detergents manufactured and a classic toiletry. It is made
from fatty acids derived from oils and fats. The traditional fats and oils used to
make soap are tallow and coconut oil. With the expansion of the oleochemical
industry, raw materials for soap makingfatty acids with C12C18 hydrocarbon
chainsare now easily available. Besides tallow, other sources of C16C18 fatty
acids are palm oil and palm stearin, a fractionated product of palm oil, while
sources for C12C14 fatty acids are palm kernel oil and coconut oil. The two main
types of soap noodles are based on tallow and palm. Other types of vegetable oil
soap bases are also available. Tallow-based soap is usually a blend of tallow, ani-
mal fats, and coconut or palm kernel oil. Palm-based soap is a blend of palm oil or
palm stearin with palm kernel oil or a combination of all three. The uniqueness of
palm-based soap is that all of the fatty acids necessary for the base are derived
from one source (palm fruits) and thus it is totally vegetable based (Fig. 4.1).
Soaps are produced by two primary methods: saponification of fats and oils or
neutralization of distilled fatty acid blends derived from the oleochemical industry.
Neutralization of distilled fatty acids is a simpler and cleaner manufacturing practice
than fats and oils saponification; it also produces glycerine as a by-product. The result-
ing glycerine has to be treated, evaporated, and distilled to obtain saleable, refined
glycerine. Traditionally tallow-based soap is prepared by saponification of the triglyc-
erides, but soap manufacturers that either produce or purchase fatty acids use the neu-
tralization route to prepare the soap base. In this chapter the term soap base will refer
to the dry soap noodles (pellets). Palm-based soap is usually manufactured through
neutralization of fatty acids; however, some manufacturers still use the oil route to
make soap. The quality of soap bases produced depends on the quality of raw materi-
als. The choice of raw materials depends on several factors, such as acceptable cost
range, producer manufacturing capabilities, and the targeted properties of the products.
Product performance depends on the ratio of the various fatty acids in the
blend. Even though soap contains a range of fatty acids from C12C18 hydrocarbon
chains, the proportion of these fatty acids has to have the correct ratio to produce a
product with good performance. Some of the characteristics of fats and oils used in
soap making are shown in Table 4.1.

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Palm Fruit Mesocarp
C16C18 Fatty Acids

Palm Fruit Kernel


C12C14 Fatty Acids

Fig. 4.1. Palm fruits.

Tallow, palm oil, and palm stearin have similar chemical properties and simi-
lar fatty acid compositions. Coconut oil and palm kernel oil are the normal contrib-
utors of the C12C14 fatty acids; however, palm kernel olein (a by-product of palm
kernel fractionation) can also be a source of these fatty acids. The chemical proper-
ties of the fatty acids derived from these oils are shown in Table 4.2. The increase
in conversion from oils and fats to fatty acids is assisted by the expansion of the
oleochemicals industry where a wide range of distilled fatty acids is available for
the soap manufacturers. These fatty acids have the flexibility and versatility to suit
the requirements of the soap producers. The oleochemical industry offers fatty
acids for soap bases and specially pre-blended distilled fatty acids for soap making.

TABLE 4.1
Characteristics of Fats and Oils

Properties
Saponification Iodine Titer Melting point Glycerine
Fats and oils value value (C) (C) (%)
Coconut oil 250264 712 2024 23.026.0 13
Tallow 192202 4852 4047 40.047.0 10
Palm kernel oil 245255 1419 2028 24.026.0 12
Palm kernel olein 231244a 2531 21.826.0a
Palm oil 196202 5055 4047 27.050.0 10
Palm stearin 193206b 48 (max) 2026 24.026.0
Sources: Witco Fats and Oils Brochure (1); aTang (3); bTang (2).

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.2
Distilled Fatty Acids for Soap Making

Properties
Saponification Acid Iodine Titer Unsaponifiable Lovibond color 5.25
Distilled fatty acids value value value (C) matter (%) cell red-yellow
Coconut 266278 265277 5.010.0 2227 0.5 0.8R8.0Y
Stripped coconut 251263 252260 5.012.0 2730 0.5 0.3R3.0Y
Palm kernelb 255267 255265 14.019.0 2226 1.0a 0.5R5.0Y
Stripped palm kernelb 248260 248258 16.022.0 2428 1.0a 0.5R5.0Y
Tallow 198207 36.065.0 3949 1.5a 0.2R0.9R
0.3Y4.3Y
Palm oilb 205214 205212 46.057.0 4549 1.0a 1.0R4.0Y
Palm stearinb 206218 206216 28.038.0 4854 1.0a 1.0R4.0Y
Soap blend (T/C) 214222 36.042.0 40a 1.0a 0.4R4.0Y
Soap blendc 215225 37.045.0 4146 1.0a 0.3R3.0Y
(40PO/40POs/20PKO)
amaximum.

Abbreviations: Tallow, T; coconut, C; palm oil, PO; palm stearin, POs; palm kernel oil, PKO.
Source: Witco (1), bCognis (4), cCognis (personal communication, 2003).

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Toilet Soaps
A variety of commercial soaps are available on the market, but the major uses are
for toilet, laundry, and household purposes. Toilet soaps normally contain about
7080% Total Fatty Matter (TFM). The common fatty acid ratios used by the
industry are 80C 16 C 18 :20C 12 C 14 , 75C 12 C 18 :25C 12 C 14 , and 70C 16 C 18 :
30C12C14. The C16C18 oils, such as tallow, palm oil, and palm stearin, contribute
to detergency and lather formation.
The characteristics of tallow and palm oil are so similar that palm oil can totally or
partially replace tallow for soap manufacturing. Palm stearin is also used at times as a
cost-effective replacement for tallow. Palm stearin yields 11% glycerine per unit of fat,
while tallow yields only 10%; it also has a higher saponification value than tallow. For
this reason a soap blend with palm stearin will require less palm kernel or coconut oil.
The C12C16 lauric oils, coconut oil, palm kernel oil, and palm kernel olein,
also contribute to detergency and lather formation. The lather formed from the lau-
ric oils is larger and more voluminous compared with the C16C18 oils; however,
the C16C18 oils have a more stable and thicker lather. Since the characteristics of
palm kernel oil resemble coconut oil, palm kernel oil can be substituted directly for
coconut oil in soap production. Palm kernel olein, a fractionated product of palm
kernel oil, being similar to coconut oil is also a good raw material for soaps and
can be used as a cheaper replacement for coconut oil.
The following abbreviations for the raw materials will be used in the rest of
this chapter: tallow (T); coconut oil (CNO); palm oil (PO); palm oil stearin (POs);
palm kernel oil (PKO); palm kernel oil olein (PKOo). For tallow-based soaps, the
ratios of fatty acids are 88T:12CNO, 85T:15CNO, 80T:20CNO, 70T:30CNO, and
50T:50CNO. Palm-based soaps are usually made with ratios of 80PO:20PKO,
75PO:25PKO, and 70PO:30PKO. Some other blends are 40POs:40T:20PKO,
40PO:40POs:20PKO, and 70POs:30PKOo.

Soap Noodles (Pellets)


Formulations. The oleochemical industry provides a wide range of raw materials that
can be used to formulate soap bases. In todays market, there are various soap-base
formulations available to satisfy the needs of the manufacturers. Some of these formu-
lations are shown in Table 4.3. In the tables, Soap Base refers to the vacuum-spray-
dried soap in noodle (pellet) form. Noodles are offered from 6 to 12 mm in diameter
and 10 to 30 mm in length. The properties of the soaps described in the table indicate
that even though the formulations vary, the basic properties are similar except for the
penetration value. Penetration value is a reflection of soap hardness; the lower the
value the harder the soaps are, while higher values indicate a softer soap. If palm-
based soaps contain distilled palm stearin fatty acid, the resultant bar soaps obtained
are slightly harder as the penetration values are lower (48 mm). Even though the
stearin-containing soaps are harder, the foaming characteristics of the soaps is the
same as that of the other formulations.

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TABLE 4.3
Distilled Fatty Acid Soap Blends

Properties
Distilled fatty acid Acid Total fatty Moisture Iodine Titer Free Sodium Penetration Foam
soap blends value matter (%) (%) value (C) caustic (%) chloride (%) value (mm) volume (mL)a
90PO:10PKO 214 84 10 54.5 43.0 0.06 0.4 53 530/365
85PO:15PKO 217 81 11 52.2 42.2 0.06 0.4 52 520/355
80PO:20PKO 219 81 10 45.2 41.3 0.06 0.4 51 505/345
75PO:25PKO 221 82 11 44.5 38.4 0.04 0.4 50 513/343
70PO:30PKO 225 83 10 43.5 37.5 0.06 0.4 50 520/340
60PO:40PKO 229 80 11 38.2 37.5 0.03 0.3 50 510/350
40PO:40PS:20PKO 224 81 11 37.0 46.0 0.10 0.2 48 470/306
80POs:20PKO 219 83 12 27.0 48.0 0.10 0.5 48 510/345
70POs:30PKO 225 82 11 29.0 47.0 0.10 0.5 48 500/325
65POs:35PKO 228 82 10 25.2 45.0 0.10 0.5 48 525/355
60POs:40PKO 229 83 11 22.0 43.8 0.10 0.3 48 500/368
aSee Glossary for foam volume test details for all tables that list foam volumes.

Abbreviations: See Table 4.2.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


The fatty acid composition of the soap blends based on the formulation in Table
4.3 is shown in Table 4.4. This table describes the blends based on fatty acid composi-
tions made up mainly of hydrocarbon chains of C12, C14, C16, and C18. Tallow-based
soaps, even if they originate from different raw material (combination of tallow and
coconut oil or palm kernel oil), due to similarity in the fatty acid composition of the
raw materials, will have similar base properties (Table 4.5). Formulations based on tal-
low, palm stearin, and palm kernel oil blends are also available. The fatty acid compo-
sition of the blends and the resultant soap properties are shown in Tables 4.6 and 4.7.
A palm stearin and palm kernel olein blend can also produce a soap base with charac-
teristics similar to other bases. Tables 4.8 and 4.9 show the properties of soaps based
on the formulations from these two types of oils.

Specifications. The technical specifications of standard tallow and palm soap bases
are listed in Table 4.10. There are two types of standard palm soap bases, one with free
caustic and the other with free acid. During fatty acid neutralization, the alkali is
always added in excess of its stoichiometric requirement to ensure complete neutral-
ization and leaving a free caustic (NaOH) content of 0.040.08%. The soap bases also
contain Free Fatty Acid (FFA). The properties of palm and tallow soap bases are simi-
lar except for the titer, in which palm soap bases have a higher and wider titer range,
4047C compared to a tallow soap base. This is because some palm soap bases con-
tain palm stearin, which contributes to the higher titer. The cleansing and the lathering
performances of both soap bases are similar because the fatty acid composition of both
soap bases is similar.
Most of the soap bases contain preservatives to ensure the stability of the soaps.
The function of preservatives is to prevent rancidity of the soap bases by chelating
metal traces, thus protecting the fatty acids in the soap from oxidation.

Toilet Soaps
Traditional toilet soap bars are made from 8085% tallow and 1520% coconut or
palm kernel oil. This ratio has been expanded due to the availability of the soap
bases with various combinations of the C16C18 fatty acids and C12C14 fatty
acids. Vegetable-based soap bars commonly found in the market are made from
blends of palm oil and palm kernel oil or their fatty acids. The ratio of the blend is
usually 80PO:20PKO, 85PO:15PKO, 40PO:40POs:20PKO, and 70POs:30PKO.
Soap characteristics with these blend types are shown in Table 4.11. The properties
of tallow-based soap bars analyzed by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board are shown in
Table 4.12. The difference between the properties of tallow- and palm-based soaps
is in the titer value. Palm-based soap bars have higher titer while most of the tal-
low-based bars are between 3639C. Palm-based soap bars with blends contain-
ing palm oil and palm kernel oil normally have titers in the range of 4043C,
while those containing palm stearin normally have a higher titer of 4346C. Other
parameters are similar for both types of soap bars. One noticeable feature is the
high free fatty acid in both tallow- and palm-based soap bars. Today most bar soap

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.4
Fats and Oils Composition

Fats and oils composition


Caprylic Capric Lauric Myristic Palmitic Stearic Oleic Linoleic
Fats and oils C8:0 C10:0 C12:0 C14:0 C16:0 C18:0 C18:1 C18:2 Other
Tallow 3.4 26.3 22.4 43.1 1.4 3.4
Palm oil 0.3 1.1 43.1 4.6 39.3 10.7 0.9
Palm stearin 0.7 1.5 55.7 4.8 29.5 7.2 0.6
Coconut oil 7.6 7.3 48.2 16.6 9.0 3.8 5.0 2.5
Palm kernel oil 1.4 2.9 50.9 18.4 9.7 1.9 14.6 1.2
Palm kernel olein 4.3 3.7 42.6 12.4 8.4 2.5 22.3 3.4 0.4
Source: Witco (1).

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.5
Fatty Acid Composition of Distilled Fatty Acid Blends

Fatty acid composition


Fatty acid Caprylic Capric Lauric Myristic Palmitic Stearic Oleic Linoleic
soap blends C8:0 C10:0 C12:0 C14:0 C16:0 C18:0 C18:1 C18:2 Other

90PO:10PKO 0.07 0.27 6.05 2.01 40.00 4.79 38.41 8.12 0.28
85PO:15PKO 0.30 0.56 8.69 3.71 31.27 4.21 37.25 7.03 0.51
80PO:20PKO 0.98 0.86 12.82 5.80 35.75 3.53 32.89 7.04 0.33
75PO:25PKO 0.97 0.85 13.55 6.56 33.58 3.69 33.43 7.05 0.42
70PO:30PKO 0.16 1.05 17.38 6.19 29.78 3.87 33.24 7.73 0.58
60PO:40PKO 1.09 1.23 19.48 7.40 33.18 3.39 29.97 6.07 0.16
40PO:40PS:20PKO 0.30 0.10 11.80 4.70 45.80 3.80 29.40 3.70 0.33
80POs:20PKO 0.30 0.60 9.80 4.50 53.100 3.70 22.45 4.70 0.82
70POs:30PKO 0.20 1.00 9.22 4.21 54.13 4.65 22.42 3.71 0.73
65POs:35PKO 0.50 1.75 14.12 5.63 49.65 3.58 20.97 3.07 0.67
60POs:40PKO 0.60 2.20 19.50 7.400 44.30 3.30 19.40 2.50 0.61
Abbreviations: See Table 4.2.

TABLE 4.6
Distilled Tallow and Vegetable Fatty Acid Blends and Resultant Soap Properties

Soap properties
Tallow and vegetable Acid Titer Iodine Free caustic Moisture Penetration value Foam volume
fatty acid soap blends value (C) value (%) (%) (mm) (mL)a
80T:20PKO 216.4 39.1 34.4 0.1 8.9 35 406/385
40T:40PS:20PKO 220.0 41.4 27.2 0.2 7.9 33 398/390
60T:20PS:20PKO 218.9 39.4 31.1 0.2 8.5 33 400/394
Abbreviations: See Table 4.2.
aSee Glossary.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.7
Distilled Tallow and Vegetable Fatty Acid Soap Blends Composition

Fatty acid composition


Tallow and vegetable Caprylic Capric Lauric Myristic Palmitic Palmitoleic Stearic Oleic Linoleic
fatty acid soap blends C8:0 C10:0 C12:0 C14:0 C16:0 C16:1 C18:0 C18:1 C18:2 Other
80T:20PKO 0.3 0.6 9.3 6.7 22.3 1.0 17.7 32.4 2.9 6.5
40T:40PS:20PKO 0.5 0.6 9.0 4.8 32.6 1.1 9.2 24.2 3.0 3.0
60T:20PS:20PKO 0.5 0.7 9.7 5.7 30.9 1.4 1.0 28.9 2.8 5.5
Abbreviations: See Table 4.2.

TABLE 4.8
Vegetable Oil Blends and Resultant Soap Properties

Soap properties
Acid Titer Iodine Free caustic Moisture Penetration value Foam volume
Vegetable oil soap blends value (C) value (%) (%) (mm) (mL)a
90PS:10PKOo 179.3 47.3 27.9 0.12 14.3 48 340/198
80PS:20PKOo 185.0 43.8 29.6 0.05 14.0 48 321/220
70PS:30PKOo 188.4 42.0 27.5 0.20 15.2 50 336/236
60PS:40PKOo 190.7 41.2 27.8 0.09 15.2 52 340/215
50PS:50PKOo 195.9 40.4 25.4 0.10 17.6 54 365/222
Abbreviations: Palm kernel oil olein, PKOo; see Table 4.2.
aSee Glossary.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.9
Fatty Acid Composition of Vegetable Oil Soap Blends

Fatty acid composition


Vegetable oil Caprylic Capric Lauric Myristic Palmitic Palmitoleic Stearic Oleic Linoleic
soap blends C8:0 C10:0 C12:0 C14:0 C16:0 C16:1 C18:0 C18:1 C18:2 Other
90PS:10PKOo 0.3 0.4 4.8 2.7 60.3 0.2 3.9 22.2 4.4 0.7
80PS:20PKOo 0.6 0.7 8.5 3.7 53.5 0.1 4.5 22.5 4.1 1.8
70PS:30PKOo 1.1 1.0 13.2 5.1 48.8 0.1 4.0 22.3 4.1 0.5
60PS:40PKOo 1.4 1.3 16.3 6.0 44.0 0.1 3.9 22.4 3.9 0.6
50PS:50PKOo 1.7 1.5 20.6 7.6 39.1 0.1 3.8 21.5 3.4 0.5
Abbreviations: See Tables 4.2 and 4.8.

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TABLE 4.10
Standard Soap Basesa

Specifications
Total fatty Moisture Free fatty acid Free caustic NaCl Glycerine
Standard soap bases matter (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%)
SNTB 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, and 40b 7881 11.014.0 1.3* 0.6* 0.5*
SNTB 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, and 40 7881 11.014.0 0.05* 0.6* 0.5*
N3020 and N4020 7881 10.513.0 2.0* 0.40.7 1.0*
N3021 and N4021 7881 10.513.0 0.05* 0.40.7 1.0*
Palmsabun 6000, 7000, 7500, and 8000 7981 10.512.5 1.3* 0.40.6
SEO 8020c 78** 13.5* 1.3* 0.6*
SEO 8020 78** 13.5* 0.05* 0.6*
SEO 7525 78** 13.5* 1.3* 0.6*
SEO 7525 78** 13.5* 0.05* 0.6*
SEO 7030 78** 13.5* 1.3* 0.6*
SEO 7525 7982 13.5* 0.05* 0.5*
SEO 7525 7982 13.5* 1.3* 0.5*
D215P 7783 8.015.0 0.000.06 0.30.6 0.30.7
Prisavon 9220 7881 11.513.5 1.03.0 0.40.6 1.51.8
Prisavon 9240 7982 10.013.0 0.010.05 0.30.5 0.20.4
Taurus 134 75.580.5 10.012.0 0.10* 0.30.7 4**
Polaris 134 75.580.5 10.012.0 0.6 0.8 79
Sources: aReferences 59, 13, and Southern Edible Oil Sdn. Bhd (personal communication).
bThe numbers next to the SNTB bases denote the lauric acid content in the soap and the balance is an equal blend of RDB palm oil and palm stearin.
cThe numbers next to the SEO bases denote the palm oil (PO) to palm kernel oil (PKO) ratios, e.g., SEO 7525 consists of a 75/25 PO/PKO blend.

*Maximum; **minimum.

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producers prefer to use free fatty acid rather than free alkali type bases. The lathering
properties, indicated by the foam volume of the soap bars in Tables 4.11 and 4.12,
show that the foam volume of both types of soap bars is within the same range.

Superfatting
Superfatting is the addition of fatty materials, be it fats and oils or fatty acids, to
soap bars. The main objectives of superfatting are to neutralize the free alkali in
the soap before it is dried into dry soap base, improve the lather volume and lather
thickness, enhance skin feel, and prevent bar soap cracking.
The type and level of superfatting agent used determine the desired properties
of the final product. In most cases superfatting is done through the addition of fatty
acids or neutral oils at a level that would not impede processing and would not be
detrimental to the final properties of the soap products. Stearic acid, palm oil fatty
acid, and coconut fatty acids are the most commonly used superfatting agents. In
most cases the amount added is usually in the range of 510%.

Formulations. Palm-based soaps with formulations of 70POs:30PKO and 40POs:


40PO:20PKO superfatted with 2, 4, and 6% distilled fatty acids increase the free
fatty acid content of the soap bases as shown in Table 4.13. Tables 4.14, 4.15, and
4.16 show the properties of soap bases superfatted with glycerine, coconut oil, and
olive oil, respectively. The higher the amount of these superfatting agents, the soft-
er the soap bases will be.

Specifications. Some soap bases are superfatted with fatty acids; this small
amount of free fatty acid provides moisturizing effects, good skin feel, mild, gives
better lather volume, and adds good plasticity to soap (Table 4.17).
It is noted that in Table 4.10 for most palm soap bases that the free acid is
1.3%; in order to obtain a soap base with free acid, the excess alkali of the standard
alkaline soap base is neutralized with fatty acids of the main blend or other fatty
acids, such as palm oil, palm kernel oil, palmitic acid, or lauric acid. The presence
of this free fatty acid provides better perfume release, since free alkali tends to
react with certain compounds in the perfume. Soap bases containing these free
fatty acids are in demand when compared to the alkali-free soap bases.
NoMar bases prevent marring, which marks soaps. Specialty soaps displayed in
baskets and other types of containers are prone to marring as they touch each other.
This unsightly damage can occur with unwrapped and wrapped soap bars as they age
and lose moisture. Table 4.18 lists suppliers of specially formulated NoMar bases for
the prevention of soap marring.

Transparent and Translucent Soaps


The raw materials used to manufacture transparent and translucent soaps have to be
pure, with minimum color, to ensure that the final products have good transparency or

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.11
Palm-Based Toilet Soaps

Properties
Palm-based Total fatty matter Moisture Free fatty acid Free caustic Sodium chloride Titer Foam volume
toilet soaps (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (C) (mL)a
Zaitun 8185 911 1.33.8 0.50.7 4647 410/240
Palmolive 8084 913 4.06.0 1.2 4647 380/210
Lux 8184 913 1.03.0 1.0 4144 495/330
May 8286 811 1.03.0 0.5 4547 410/240
Kao 8084 911 7.0** 0.71.0 3940 400/230
Nona 8081 910 0.05* 1.0* 4344 510/280
Ria 7981 1013 0.03 0.5 4243 535/380
*Maximum, **minimum.
aSee Glossary.

TABLE 4.12
Tallow-Based Toilet Soaps

Properties
Tallow-based Total fatty matter Moisture Free fatty acid Free caustic Sodium chloride Titer Foam volume
toilet soaps (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (C) (mL)a
Fa 75 7.0 1.7 0.6 39.0 495/335
Dial 78 11.0 3.7 1.4 37.0 500/335
Coast 82 11.5 0.8 0.6 36.2 535/375
Tone 81 10.0 3.4 1.1 36.7 560/410
Safeguard 82 9.3 0.7 0.7 36.6 530/375
Irish Spring 79 8.5 8.3 1.5 34.2 340/170
Palmolive 75 11.2 0.04 0.3 37.6 560/410
Ivory 71 21.0 0.03 0.7 36.6 480/330
aSee Glossary.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.13
Soap Bases Superfatted with Distilled Soap Fatty Acids (DFA)

Properties
Total fatty Free fatty Sodium Penetration Foam
Superfatted soap blends with matter acid Moisture Free caustic chloride value volume
distilled fatty acids (DFA) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (mm) (mL)a
70POs:30PKO 76 16 0.16 0.5 50 415/230
with 2% (DFA) 77 1.3 17 0.5 51 340/205
with 4% (DFA) 78 1.3 14 0.5 51 240/107
with 6% (DFA) 77 3.7 16 0.5 62 270/112
40POs:40PS:20PKO 76 14 0.15 0.5 46 470/305
with 2% (DFA) 80 1.3 12 0.5 51 490/335
with 4% (DFA) 78 3.2 15 0.5 52 355/185
with 6% (DFA) 83 6.8 10 0.5 74 360/175
Abbreviations: See Table 4.2. aSee Glossary.

TABLE 4.14
Soap Bases with Glycerine

Properties
Total fatty matter Moisture Free caustic Sodium chloride Penetration value Foam volume
Soap bases with glycerine (%) (%) (%) (%) (mm) (mL)a
70POs:30PKO 82 11 0.10 0.5 48 500/325
with 1% glycerine 83 11 0.10 0.4 51 505/337
with 2% glycerine 84 12 0.10 0.4 52 517/340
40POs:40PO:20PKO 81 11 0.20 0.2 48 470/306
with 1% glycerine 80 11 0.10 0.4 66 520/350
with 2% glycerine 81 11 0.10 0.5 75 500/340
Abbreviations: See Table 4.2. aSee Glossary.

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TABLE 4.15
Soap Bases with Coconut Oil

Properties
Total fatty Free fatty Moisture Free caustic Sodium Penetration value Foam
Soap bases with coconut oil matter (%) acid (%) (%) (%) chloride (%) (mm) volume (mL)a
70POs:30PKO 82 11 0.1 0.2 38 485/315
with 2% coconut oil 86 1.0 12 0.4 43 517/375
with 4% coconut oil 86 1.0 10 0.4 44 507/375
with 6% coconut oil 86 1.0 11 0.4 48 512/375
40POs:40PO:20PKO 81 11 0.2 0.5 46 465/300
with 2% coconut oil 81 0.4 11 0.5 46 480/314
with 4% coconut oil 84 0.6 9 0.5 48 475/318
with 6% coconut oil 90 0.6 10 0.5 78 485/325
Abbreviations: See Table 4.2. aSee Glossary.

TABLE 4.16
Soap Bases with Olive Oil

Properties
Soap bases Free caustic Free fatty acid Moisture Total fatty matter Sodium chloride Penetration value Foam volume
with olive oil (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (mm) (mL)a
70POs:30PKO 0.1 11 82 0.2 38 480/308
with 2% olive oil 0.2 12 85 0.4 39 538/355
with 4% olive oil 0.1 10 86 0.4 57 550/357
with 6% olive oil 0.1 11 86 0.4 70 558/380
40POs:40PO:20PKO 0.2 11 81 0.5 46 473/305
with 2% olive oil 0.4 11 81 0.5 46 467/300
with 4% olive oil 0.6 9 84 0.5 48 490/346
with 6% olive oil 0.6 10 90 0.5 78 478/335
Abbreviations: See Table 4.2. aSee Glossary.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.17
Superfatted Soap Basesa

Total fatty Free fatty


matter Moisture acid NaCl Glycerine
Superfatted soap bases (%)
SNSF-20 7881 11.014.0 3.05.0 0.6* 0.5*
SNSF-30 7881 11.014.0 3.05.0 0.6* 0.5*
SNSF-40 7881 11.014.0 3.05.0 0.6* 0.5*
Palmsabun 8005 8082 10.512.5 2.54.5 0.40.6
Palmsabun 7505 8082 10.512.5 2.54.5 0.40.6
Palmsabun 7005 8082 10.512.5 2.54.5 0.40.6
D225P 7383 10.014.0 2.55.0 0.41.0 0.51.5
Prisavon 1650*** 8184 8.011.0 1.0* 0.40.7 1.01.4
Prisavon 9218 7881 11.513.5 1.03.0 0.40.6 1.51.8
Prisavon 9242 7077 11.014.0 1.52.5 0.30.5 1.11.5
Prisavon 9244 8083 9.011.0 1.52.5 0.40.6 1.42.0
Prisavon 9245 7881 11.014.0 1.52.5 0.40.6 1.42.0
Sources: aReferences 5, 6, 8, and 9.
*Maximum; **minimum; ***preservative free.

translucency. About half of a transparent soap formula is soap produced from tal-
low, RBD (Refined, Bleached and Deodorized) palm oil, RBD palm kernel oil,
coconut oil, castor oil, rosin, and other fats and oils. The remaining ingredients
include additives such as sucrose, sorbitol, glycerine, ethanolamide, coconut dieth-
nolamine, triethanolamine (TEA), propylene glycol, -olefin sulfonate (AOS),
sodium cocoyl isethionate (SCI), sodium lauryl ether sulfate (SLES), and alcohol
(10).
Transparent soaps are made by the batch cast (poured, molded) process.
Companies that do not manufacture their own transparent products can purchase
already formulated translucent bases by producers of Melt and Pour (M&P)-type spe-
cialty bases. The M&P base can be easily melted; fragrance, color, additives to
enhance bar performance, and even interesting inserts can be added to the melted

TABLE 4.18
NoMar Soap Bases

Properties
NoMar soap bases Total fatty matter (%) Moisture (%) Glycerine (%)
Pace-HGL 74** 13* 68
Plastibar 6975 1115 68
Prisavon 9259 69.573.5 1315 68
Opal 508 7277 1114 68
Sources: aReferences 5, 8, 9, and 11.
*Maximum; **minimum.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.19
Translucent Soap Basesa

Total fatty Moisture Free fatty Glycerine


Translucent soap bases matter (%) (%) acid (%) (%)
PACE TL2001 67** 15.0* 3.0* 68
ISC Diamond 6773 15.018.0 2.83.4 710
(as oleic acid)
Prisavon 1979 6570 13.015.0 2.03.0 78
Prisavon 1984 6469 13.516.0 2.03.0 78
Pearl 510 and 511 6368 15.018.0 1.52.5 68
(as stearic acid)
Trident & Aries 254 66.572.5 14.518.0 1.752.5 68
(as stearic acid)
Sources: aReferences 5, 8, 9, 11, and 13.
*Maximum; **minimum.

base. The finished product is poured into molds where it solidifies. Molds of many
types and shapes are available from several suppliers. M&P soap making has become
popular with homemade and specialty gift type soap makers. Stephenson Personal
Care (11) offers a wide range of M&P products under the Crystal name.
Unlike transparent soaps, translucent soaps are extruded continuously. Most
translucent soaps contain sorbitol, glycerine, propylene glycol, and some have TEA;
the moisture content should be at least 15%. In the past, other additives were also used
but were slowly eliminated because they provided no extra transparency enhance-
ment. During the last few years, several major companies launched many translucent
soaps, packaged in transparent packaging materials worldwide. Firms that do not pro-
duce their own translucent soap but have bar soap finishing equipment can buy fin-
ished translucent bases (Table 4.19).

Laundry Bars
Laundry bar soaps are used for general household cleaning and manual washing.
With the advent of detergent powders and bars, laundry soaps have become less
popular and their use is declining. There are three types of laundry bar products on
the market, namely laundry soap bars, synthetic laundry bars, and combo laundry
bars. Soap bars primarily contain anhydrous soap as the surfactant, syndet bars
contain only synthetic surfactant, and combo bars are a mixture of soap and syn-
thetic surfactant.
Few laundry soap bases are offered, since most companies make their laundry
bars starting from raw materials instead of buying the base. Palm laundry soap
bases are offered by Pan-Centurys Edible Oils Sdn. Bhd. and Southern Edible Oils
Sdn. Bhd. The technical specifications are shown in Table 4.20. The laundry soap
bar market is very large in many developing countries, but it is very limited in the
industrialized regions and therefore only three brands were analyzed (Table 4.21).

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


TABLE 4.20
Palm Laundry Soap Bases

Properties
Moisture Free fatty acid Free caustic Sodium chloride Titer
Palm laundry soap bases Total fatty matter (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (C)
SNTC 10 7881 11.014.0 1.3a 0.05a 0.6a 4448
SNTC 20 7881 11.014.0 1.3a 0.05a 0.6a 4246
SNLW-1 75b 18a 1.3a 0.1a0 0.6a
SNLW-2 70b 23a 1.3a 0.1a0 0.6a
SNLC-1 75b 18a 1.3a 0.1a0 0.6a
SNLC-2 70b 23a 1.3a 0.1a0 0.6a
SEOL 65b 1823 0.05a 0.5 4648
aMaximum.
bMinimum.

Sources: Pan-Century Edible Oil Sdn. Bhd. (5), and Southern Edible Oil Sdn. Bhd. (personal communication).

TABLE 4.21
Palm-Based Laundry Bar Soaps

Properties
Palm-based Moisture Free fatty acid Free caustic Sodium chloride Titer
laundry bar soaps Total fatty matter (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (C)
Buruh 7075 1520 3.0 0.05 0.5 4648
Mysore 82 8 0.04 0.4 4048
Jabon 71 27 0.05 0.4 4048

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Conclusion
In summary the properties of tallow soap bases and palm soap bases are similar
except for titer. The higher titer in some palm soap bases is attributed to the incor-
poration of palm stearin in the soap blend; however, the performance of both types
of soap bases is similar. Hardness of the soaps due to high titer can be addressed
by the addition of superfatting agents. The amount added will depend on the nature
of the superfatting agents and their effect on the properties of the final soap bars.
Two of the major competitors for toilet bar soaps are the body washes and the
liquid soaps. In Western Europe liquid body wash sales exceed bar soap, while in
the United States bar soap consumption is still higher but the use of liquids has
been growing yearly. In the Asian market, bar soap dominates the market because
it is cheaper than liquid soap, contains more surfactant, has long shelf life, and is
easy to transport.
Liquid body wash is also popular; this is due to the presence of various skin-care
additives in the products. Nevertheless, bar soap manages to overcome this drawback
by adding natural skin-care and facial-care ingredients. These natural ingredients are
usually plant extracts with special properties. This can be seen in the range of translu-
cent and transparent soap bases produced by Stephenson Personal Care. Besides the
use of natural additives, bar soap manufacturers are also keeping up with the present
trend of low pH soaps by producing less alkaline soap through superfatting with fatty
acids, adding surfactant, and incorporating emollients or moisturizers. Thus, the soap
manufacturers have to be creative in producing soaps with different properties, func-
tions, and variations to satisfy this greater demand.

Glossary
Acid Value (AV). The acid value is the number of milligrams of potassium hydrox-
ide (KOH) necessary to neutralize the fatty acids in 1 g of sample. Higher AV materi-
als allow faster-appearing but less stable suds creation. Lower AV materials allow
slower-appearing but more stable suds formation. A lower AV means more cleansing
(detergency). AV is used for fatty acids only to provide an estimate of SV. The AV
for fatty acids is very close to the SV. The AV is usually ~2 points lower than the SV.

Fatty Acids. Fatty acids are linear, mainly even carbonnumbered long-chain hydro-
carbons with a terminal carboxyl group. Unsaturated fatty acids are those with one or
more double bonds in their carbon chain structure.

Free Alkalinity (Free Caustic). Free alkalinity is the amount of alkali content present
in a sample expressed as a percentage weight of free sodium hydroxide (NaOH). The
higher the free alkalinity, the greater the skin irritation from soap. The higher the alka-
linity, the greater the cleaning power of soap. For toilet soaps, lower alkalinity is pre-
ferred for a better product stability with respect to color and odor. For laundry soaps,
higher alkalinity is preferred for better cleansing properties of the product.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Free Fatty Acid (FFA). This is the free fatty acid content present in a sample com-
monly expressed as oleic acid, but it can also be expressed as palmitic acid or
stearic acid.

Free Glycerine. The amount of free glycerine present in the sample expressed as a
percentage weight of the total sample. It is perceived as a moisturizer. Glycerine levels
2% will harden soap. Levels > 2% yield a softer and stickier soap. Glycerine is used
as a processing aid for low-moisture, high-titer products.

Foam Volume. This is the measure of the foamability of a cleansing product. The
foam volumes (mL) listed in the tables were determined using a 0.1% soap solution
placed in a measuring cylinder and agitated with a perforated paddle stirrer for 30
strokes. The initial measurement (first number) was recorded after the end of the agita-
tion and the final foam volume (second number) was recorded 5 min after the agitation
stopped. There are different foam test protocol methods. The Ross Miles method is the
most widely used. All of the methods give relative volumes and are used for lather
comparison. There is no standard method giving absolute values.

Iodine Value (IV). The iodine value is a measure of the unsaturation (double bonds)
in fats, oils, and fatty acids. It is expressed in terms of the number of grams of iodine
absorbed by 100 g of sample (% iodine absorbed). The higher the IV, the higher the
degree of unsaturation and the greater the vulnerability for rancidity. As the IV level
increases, soaps become softer and stickier. Foaming and cleansing increase as the IV
increases and decrease as the IV decreases in higher-chain saturated fatty acids.
Coconut oil (IV range of 712) is an exception. It produces the hardest soap and the
fastest sudsing, but lacks suds stability.

Lovibond Color. This is a color measurement of the fats, oils, and fatty acids deter-
mined with a Lovibond Tintometer. A 5.25 glass cell containing the sample is com-
pared with Lovibond glass red (R) and yellow (Y) color standards and the colors are
recorded in R and Y units. The R value is the color-controlling value. An R value 1.0
is preferred for the production of white soaps. An R value > 2.5 will result in off-white
(darker color) soaps.

Melting Point. The temperature expressed in C at which a triglyceride or fatty


acid liquefies.

Moisture Content. This is the amount of volatile material present in a sample


expressed as a percentage weight.

Penetration Value. This is a measure of bar soap hardness. It is expressed as the


depth (mm) to which a penetrometer needle penetrates a bar of soap when subjected to
a 50-g weight. The deeper the needle travels, the softer the soap.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Saponification Value (SV). The saponification value is defined as the number of mil-
ligrams of potassium hydroxide (KOH) required to saponify 1 g of sample. SV is used
to determine the average molecular weight (MW) of fats and oils being saponified,
using the formula: MW = 56,100/SV. Mixtures of high- and low-SV stocks provide
very desirable levels of sudsing and cleansing. Typically, 1030% of high-SV and
9070% of low-SV triglycerides are used.

Sodium Chloride. The amount of sodium chloride (NaCl) present in a sample


expressed as a percentage weight of sodium chloride or simply chloride. Sodium chlo-
ride is one of the most critical ingredients for soap processing and product attributes.
Sodium chloride hardens the soap, but high levels can create cracking and decrease
sudsing. In standard nonsuperfatted low coco soaps, the level should not exceed 0.5%.
The chloride level increases in nonsuperfatted soaps, depending upon the level of
coco/palm kernel soap in the product. It can be as high as 23% in high coco-contain-
ing soaps. Superfatted soaps can have up to 1.5% sodium chloride without detrimental
effects.

Titer. This is the measure of the solidification point of fatty matter (fats, oils, and
fatty acids) measured in C. Higher titer provides harder soap. Lower titer provides
better cleansing (with longer-chain fatty acids or triglycerides).

Total Fatty Matter (TFM). Total fatty matter is expressed as the fatty acids
obtained from soap and is the sum of the free fatty acid, the fatty acid obtained
from soap, and the unsaponifiables. The test method used for determination of
TFM requires the splitting of soap using mineral acids and then the extraction of
the fatty matter using petroleum ether. Total fatty matter does not include the fatty
matter generated by nonsoapy synthetic actives. The TFM of triglyceride is the
amount of fatty acids produced by splitting the oil. The TFM of fatty acids is the
total weight of fatty acids. Fatty acids are 100% TFM.

Unsaponified and Unsaponifiable matter (U&U). The unsaponified matter con-


sists of neutral unreacted fat, which is not saponified. The unsaponifiable matter
includes substances frequently found dissolved in fats and oils that cannot be
saponified with caustic alkalies but are soluble in ordinary fat solvents. U&U com-
prises the amount of substances soluble in petroleum ether present in the sample
and is expressed as a percentage weight. High unsaponifiable content makes soap
sticky and can lead to discoloration. Unsaponifiables contribute to the emolliency
and skin-feel attributes of soap bars. They basically act as superfatting agents
and are a part of the TFM.

Note: For detailed analytical testing procedures please consult the official AOCS
Methods.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Soap Calculations
Two Routes to Soap Making
Two primary routes exist for soap making (14).
1. Triglycerides
RCOOCH2 CH2OH
| |
RCOOCH + 3NaOH 3RCOONa + CHOH
| |
RCOOCH2 CH2OH
Triglyceride + caustic soda soap + glycerine

2. Fatty acids
RCOOH + NaOH RCOONa + H2O
Fatty acid + caustic soda soap + water

Fat Blend Calculations


The SV, IV, and titer are all additive of the proportional values of fat blend compo-
nents. The SV, IV, and titer of an 80/20 blend of tallow (SV 197, IV 45, titer 41)
and coconut oil (SV 257, IV 10, titer 22) can be calculated per Table 4.22.

Caustic Soda Requirement Calculations


The saponification of a fat blend results in the formation of soap and glycerine (Eq. 1).

triglyceride + 3 NaOH 3 RCOONa + glycerine [1]

The fat blend and caustic soda are mixed in a nearly stoichiometric ratio, with
~0.10.5% excess of alkali. The molecular weight of the fat blend is calculated per
Equation 2.

56.1 168, 300


MW fat = 3 1000 = [2]
SV SV

TABLE 4.22
Calculation of SV, IV, and Titer of an 80/20 Tallow/Coconut Oil Blend

Fat component (%) SV Titer (C) IV


Tallow 80 197 80% 41 80% 45 80%
Coconut oil 20 257 20% 22 20% 10 20%
Blend 100 209 37.2 38

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Problem 1. Calculate the MW of an 80/20% blend of tallow (SV 197) and
coconut oil (SV 258).

168, 300
MW tallow = = 854
197
168, 300
MW coco = = 652
258
MW 80 / 20 T/C = (854 80%) + (652 20%) = 813.6
The amount of caustic soda required to saponify a fat blend of known SV can be
calculated via Equation 3.

SV MW NaOH SV 40
= = SV 0. 000713g / g [3]
1000 MW KOH 1000 56.1
Problem 2. Calculate the amount of caustic soda (50%) required to saponify 500
lb of an 80/20% (SV 209) tallow/coconut oil blend.

0. 000713
NaOH 50% = SV 100
50
0. 000713
= 209 100 g / g
50
= 0. 298g / g 500 lb = 149 lb

Saponification ProductsQuantity Calculations


The Quantity of Soap
The amount of soap produced in a saponification reaction can be calculated from
Equations 46.
triglyceride + 3 NaOH = 3 soap + glycerine
1 mol 3 40 = 120 3 mol 92

soap wt = MW fat + 120 92 = MW fat + 28 [4]

fat wt
= ( fat MW + 28) [5]
fat MW

fat SV 168, 300


= wt + 28 [6]
168, 300 SV

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


The Quantity of Glycerine
Glycerine liberated in a saponification mixture can be calculated from Equation 7.

Since triglyceride + 3 KOH = soap + glycerol,

SV 92
glycerine % = 100
1000 168.3
= SV 0. 0547

SV 0. 0547 fat wt
glycerine wt = [7]
100
For fat blends with high levels of FFA, the following calculation will give the
glycerine content of the saponification mixtures (Eq. 8):

fat triglyceride , (TG) = SV AV

TG 92
glycerine % = 100
1000 168.3
glycerine % = TG 0. 0547 [8]
Problem 3. Calculate the amounts of soap and glycerine produced in the saponifi-
cation of a blend of 250 lb of tallow (SV 197) and 250 lb of coconut fatty acid (AV
260; SV 260).
In this case, fatwt = 500 lb, and

SV AV
Tallow 197 50% = 98.5
Coconut fatty acid 260 50% = 130 260 50% = 130

TG = SV AV
TG = SV AV
= (SV [tallow] + SV [coconut fatty acid] AV
= (SV [tallow] + SV [coconut fatty acid]) AV
= (98.5 + 130) 130
= (98.5 + 130) 130
= 228.5 130
= 228.5 130
= 98.5
= 98.5

glycerine wt = TG 0. 0547
= 98. 5 0. 0547
= 5.39%
= 5.39 500 / 100
= 26. 95 lb (from Eq. 8)
(continued p. 138)

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


500
228.5 + 28 (from Eq. 6)
168, 300
soap wt =
168, 300 228.5

= 0.679 76
= 519 lb
The amount of caustic soda required for this reaction can be calculated per
Equation 3.

NaOHwt = 228.5 0.000713 500


= 81.46 lb (100% NaOH)

Total Fatty Matter (TFM) Calculation


For product specifications purposes, TFM of a fat mixture is obtained from triglyc-
eride (TG) mass, less its glycerine content, plus water (Eq. 9).

triglyceride + 3 H2O = 3 RCOOH + glycerine


3 18 = 54 fatty acid 92

TFM = (TG + 54) 92

= TG 38

56.1
TG eq.wt = 1000
SV

FFA eq.wt = TG (38 / 3)

=
56,100
12.66
SV

FFA eq.wt
TFN% =
TG eq.wt

Fatty Acid Blend Calculations


The following three methods are utilized in the calculation of fatty acid and alkali
reactants: the molecular weight (MW) method, the gram-mole (G-Mole) method,
and the acid value (AV) method.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


In the molecular weight method, the fatty acid and alkali are blended in the
ratio of their molecular weights. The G-Mole method is a variant of molecular
weight method; the reactants are mixed in their grams per mole ratio. The acid
value method permits the blending of fatty acids and alkalis on the basis of the acid
value of the fatty acid utilized in the neutralization reaction.

NaOHwt = FAwt AV 0.713 NaOH (%)

Since molecular weight and acid value are interrelated: MW = 56.1/AV


1000, the molecular weight method will be described in more detail in this chap-
ter.
For fatty acids, the acid value (AV), titer, and saponification value (SV) are
all additive of the partial moieties present in the blend. Thus, for a blend of tallow
and coconut fatty acids in a 80/20% ratio, the AV of the blend is 218 (Table 4.23).

Caustic Soda Requirement Calculations


For the reaction, RCOOH + NaOH = RCOONa + H2O, use Equation 10.
FAMW 40 (FAMW + 22) 18

56.1 56,100
FA MW = 1000 =
AV AV

FA wt
NaOH wt = 40
FA MW

FA wt
= 40
(56,100 / AV)

FA wt AV 40
= [10]
56,100

TABLE 4.23
Calculation of the Acid Value of a Fatty Acid Blend

Fatty acid component % AV


Tallow (AV 305) 80 205 80% = 164
Coconut (AV 270) 20 270 20% = 54
Total = 218

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Fatty Acid Neutralization Products
The Quantity of Soap Produced
Soap produced in the neutralization reaction can be calculated per Equations 11
and 12.

FA wt
soap wt = ( FA wt + 22 ) [11]
FA wt

FA wt 56,100
= 22 [12]
FA wt AV

The Amount of Water Produced


This is calculated as per Equation 13.

FA wt
water wt = 18 [13]
FA MW

Formula Adjustments
Occasionally, the fatty acid blends or neat soap mixtures require an adjustment of
blend composition due to a weighing or calculation error. This section describes
practical approaches to handling such manufacturing problems.

Fatty Acid Blend Molecular Weight Adjustment


This adjustment usually requires the addition of a fatty acid of molecular weight
lower or higher than the molecular weight of the blend to be adjusted. Equation 14
can be used for this purpose.

Let x = portion of fatty acid to be added.


(1 x) = portion of fatty acid blend to be adjusted.

x (FA added)MW + {(1 x) [FA (initial blend)MW]} = FA (final blend)MW [14]

Problem 4. You have a tallow/coconut fatty acid blend of MW 244. How much
tallow fatty acid (MW 274) should be added to it to convert it into a blend of MW
255?
From Equation 14, let x = portion of tallow fatty acid (MW 274) to be added;
(1 x) = portion of initial blend (MW 244).

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


x(274) + [(1 x)244] = 255
(274x) + (244 244x) = 255
(274x) (244x) = 255 244
30x = 11
x = 0.37; or 37%
(1 x) = 100 37 = 63%
Thus, fatty acid blend (initial) = MW 244 63% = 153.7
tallow fatty acid added = MW 274 37% = 101.3
final blend = MW 255

An alternative to this calculation is described in Equation 15.

Let initial fatty acid weight = Wt1; MW = MW1


final fatty acid weight = Wt2; MW = MW2; and
fatty acid added weight = x; MW = MW3

FA added wt = 1 Wt1
Wt
x

MW 3 MW 2 [15]
x=
MW 3 MW1

Problem 5. You have a 100-lb blend of fatty acid, MW 244. How much of a fatty
acid of MW 274 should be added to it to make a final blend of MW 255?

274 255 19
x= = = 0.633
274 244 30

FA added wt =
100
100 = 58. 0 lb
0.633

Thus, FA initialwt = 100 lb (63%) Fa initialMW: 244 63% = 153.7


FA addedwt = 58 lb (37%) Fa addedMW: 274 37% = 101.3
FA final blendwt = 158 lb FA final blendMW: = 255

Alkalinity/Acidity Adjustment
In cases of the downward adjustment of the acidity of superfatted formulas,
Equation 16 can be used, where FFA refers to the free fatty acid to be neutralized.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


FFA wt = soap wt FFA %

FFA wt
NaOH added = 40
FFA MW

FFA wt 40
= 100 [16]
FFA MW NaOH %

Problem 6. A neat soap batch (400 lb) was found to contain 3% FFA (MW 280).
How much NaOH (50%) should be added to it to make it neutral?

FFA wt = 400 3% = 12 lb

NaOH added =
12 40
100 = 3. 4 lb
280 50

The upward adjustment of the FFA level of a neat soap blend is done via Equation 17.

soap wt (soap wt FFA initial% )


conversion factor, CF =
soap wt (soap wt FFA final % )

FFA added wt = (CF soap wt ) soap wt [17]

Problem 7. You have a 400-lb batch of neat soap with FFA (MW 280) of 1%.
How much FFA (MW 280) should be added to it for a final FFA (MW 280) con-
tent of 2% in the neat soap?

400 (400 1%) 400 4


CF = = = 1. 01
400 (400 2%) 400 8

FA added wt = (1. 01 400) 400 = 4. 0 lb

The adjustment of a formula of high alkalinity, via the addition of a fatty acid,
is performed by Equation 18.

alkali wt = soap wt alkalinity%

alkali wt FA MW
FA added wt = [18]
alkali MW

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


Problem 8. A 400-lb batch of neat soap has an alkalinity of 1.6% (as NaOH). How
much of a fatty acid of MW 280 should be added to it to make the net soap neutral?

alkali wt = 400 1.6% = 6. 4 lb as NaOH

64 280
FA added wt = = 44l8 lb
40
The molecular weight interconversion of fatty acids can be calculated via
Equation 19.

FFA A MW A
= [19]
FFA B MW B

Problem 9. A soap bar sample contains 2% coconut fatty acid (MW 207) as the
superfat. Convert this and express it as tallow fatty acid (MW 273) superfat
value.

2 207
=
FFA B 273

2 273
FFA B = = 2.63%
207

Problem 10. You have a 400-lb batch of soap containing 2% coconut fatty acid
(MW 208) as the superfat. How much additional coconut fatty acid should be
added to it so that this batch contains a total of 4% super-fat, expressed as stearic
acid (MW 274)?
In this example, we need to determine the amount of coconut fatty acid present
initially in the soap, the above quantity expressed as stearic acid, the additional
amount of coconut fatty acid required, and that quantity expressed as stearic acid.
From Equation 19,

208 274 2
stearic FA initial = = 2.63%
274 208
FFA added = FFA calculated FFA Iinitial

= 4. 0 2.63

= 1.37%

The above quantity of stearic acid to be added should then be converted into
the coconut fatty acid equivalent, as per Equation 19.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


FFA A MW A
=
FFA B MW B

FFA A 208
=
1.37 274
1.37 208
FFA A = = 1. 04% = (400 1. 04%) = 4.16 lb
274
The batch contains now a total of 8.0 + 4.16 = 12.16 lb (3.01%) of coconut
fatty acid. This is equivalent to 4% stearic acid, as per Equation 19.
The calculation for the adjustment of alkalinity follows: The alkalinity of a for-
mula containing FFA can be increased as per Equation 20.
First, calculate the amount of alkali needed to bring the formula to neutrality
via Equation 16. Then, the amount of additional alkali needed to reach the desired
alkali level is calculated.

alkali final % alkali initial%


alkalinity adjustment, AA =
100 100
AA soap wt
alkali wt = [20]
alkali %

Problem 11. For a 400-lb batch of neat soap containing 2% FFA (MW 270), how
much NaOH should be added to increase the alkalinity (as NaOH) to 0.1?

From Equation 16, FFA wt = 400 2% = 8 lb

8
NaOH added = 40 = 1.18 lb
270
0.1 0
From Equation 20, AA = = 0. 001
100 100
0. 001 400
NaOH wt = 100 = 0. 4 lb
100
NaOH total added = 1.18 + 0. 4 lb = 1. 58 lb 100

The alkalinity of a formula, which is already alkaline, can be increased further


by Equation 20; the alkalinity of a formula can be decreased by the addition of a
fatty acid via Equation 18.

Problem 12. A 400-lb batch of neat soap contains 2% FFA (MW 270). How much of
a 30% NaOH solution should be added to it to bring the FFA level to 1% (MW 208)?

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


A combination of equations will be used for this calculation.

FFA wt = 400 2% = 8 lb

From Equation 19,

8 270
=
FFA B 208

8 208
FFA B = = 6.16 lb
270

Now, the batch requires 400 1% = 4 lb FFA (MW 208). Thus, excess FFA (MW
208) = 6.16 4 = 2.16 lb. To neutralize 2.16 lb of fatty acid with 30% NaOH,
Equation 16 is utilized:

2.16 40
30% NaOH added = 1.38 lb
208 30

To summarize in molar equivalents, the formulas containing free fatty acids


will have the following weight ratios:

coconut fatty acidwt < stearic acidwt

To illustrate, 5% coconut fatty acid, MW 208 (as FFA) = 6.6% stearic acid,
MW 274 (as FFA). In other terms, it will take a greater quantity of stearic acid than
coconut fatty acid to neutralize a given quantity of alkali.

Acknowledgments
We would like to thank Dr. Yusof Basiron, the Director General of the Malaysian Palm Oil
Board for his support and permission to write this chapter. Appreciation is also extended to
the various companies for the information they supplied and also to Dr. Hamirin Kifli for his
suggestions and support.

References
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USA, 1997, pp. 911, 16.
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Selangor, Malaysia, May 2000.
3. Tang, T.S., Specification for Palm Kernel Stearin, in Malaysian Standard, MS 1437,
SIRIM Publications, Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia, 1998, pp. 23.

Copyright 2004 AOCS Press


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Copyright 2004 AOCS Press