In a major scientific development the researchers at IIT Kharagpur have developed a novel betel leaf oil extraction technology. It is believed that it can improve the efficiency of the process and reduce wastage according to an official as said on Saturday.
The extractor is capable of saving 30 per cent of energy and increasing the betel oil yield by more than 16 per cent, as compared to the current process and apparatus popularly used but the extraction processes suffer from low economic viability and wastage in the value chain of betel leaves.
According to Professor Guha “‘it is a distillation unit with special modifications for recycling evaporated water which carries the vapour of essential oil from the distillation flask to the condensation Unit.” He also said “‘the extractor is affordable to the betel leaf growers as the cost of its assembling and fabrication is estimated at Rs 10,000 and Rs 20,000 for 10-litre and 20-litre units respectively.”
The extracted oil from betel leaves has antioxidants and antimicrobial properties and is used in the manufacturing of medicines and cosmetics.