ADM joins Japanese company in venture to distribute edible oil

by Emily Wilson
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Archer Daniels Midland Co. and Japan's Kao Corp. have signed a letter of intent to create a 50-50 joint venture for the manufacture, marketing and sale of diacyl-glycerol (DAG) oil as an ingredient for cookies, snacks and other food products.

Corn, soybeans, cottonseed and all other oilseeds are potential sources for raw material for DAG oil, which currently is marketed for health conscious consumers in Japan under the trade name Econa oil.

ADM said clinical trials thus far have demonstrated that Econa oil aids in the maintenance or loss of weight and fat mass. It also helps to maintain healthy triglyceride levels in the bloodstream, ADM said.

By maintaining triglyceride levels, Kao said, the inclusion of DAG as an ingredient in cooking oils also contributes to retarding the formation of fat in the body.

"Econa oil is indistinguishable in taste and appearance from conventional vegetable oils," said John D. McNamara, president of ADM. "We see tremendous potential in expanding into virtually all foods that contain vegetable oils."

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