To understand the changes in the color of peanut oil during maturation of the seeds, measurements were made of carotenoid and oil contents per kernel and carotenoid concentration of extracted peanut oil between the 4th and 12th weeks from pegging. Initially carotenoid concentration in the oil declined rapidly followed by a 50% decline between the 6th and 12th week. Changes in the carotenoid content and oil content of the peanut kernel indicated that the decrease in carotenoid concentration was due to a dilution produced by the rapid increase in oil content. Evidence is presented to indicate that the carotenoids are in areas separated from the oil containing spherosomes of the peanut kernel.
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