Shea Butter belongs to the family sapotaceae.
Shea Butter is a substance that is drawn from a nut that comes from the shea tree. When the fruits are ripe they fall off the trees and are handpicked. The fruits are green – yellow in colour, oval in shape.
The fruits are then depulped, boiled and sun dried, decorticated to kernel, sun dried again, crushed, roasted before grinding into paste.
The paste is then kneaded into cream and finally the cream is boiled and the fat separated from the residue.
It contains high levels of unsaponifiables (7 – 12%) and vitamin A & E making it the best single oil for anti-aging, creams, UV sun protection, hair creams, swelling and arthritis, cell regeneration and circulation which favours the healing processes of damage skin. Ect.. It also contains other elements like free fatty Acid, peroxide betasitosterols and cinnamic Acid.
Shea Butter has many uses. It is used for cooking/frying body and hair moisturisers and other cosmetic products creams, soaps, candles, illuminant, as a cocoa butter equivalent for making chocolate, (Cocoa Butter Equivalents-CBEs)
Other manufacturing uses are in the Bakery where it is processed into baking fat or incorporated into margarine formulations and the pharmaceutical industry where it is used in suppositories and dermatological cream.