Sunflower Oil Production Business (Cost to Start)

Introduction of Sunflower oil production business

Sunflower, this name comes from its property of turning its head during the day to follow the sun to get enough energy for its growth. Each bright yellow and big flower head has nearly 1,000 seeds surrounded the petals. Sunflowers can grow up to 10 feet high, and the roots of them may grow 6 feet into the ground.

Ideas to start a Sunflower oil production business in India

Currently, the Sunflower oil that is sold in the market is mostly produced by the de-shelled pre-squeezing and leaching process. De-shelled pressing-leaching technology is the key point of the Sunflower oil production line which avoids the negative impact of over-refining, high temperature, and acid and alkali effects on oils, so that the nutrients in the Sunflower oil can be well preserved.

Harvest at the right time for Sunflower oil production business

Growing Sunflowers is easy, but knowing when and how to harvest the seeds isn’t that easy. If you harvest too soon, you will have plenty but small kernels inside the seeds. If you wait too long, on the other hand, they may dry out or get harvested by the birds. A few things to look for when determining when to harvest are:

  • Harvest when seeds are plump and developed
  • Harvest when flower petals begin to dry out and fall off
  • Harvest when the back of the flower will turn into brown (if you are letting seeds dry with the stem intact)

Collecting the seeds for sunflower oil production business to make a profit

  • Cut them off when the back of the flower heads turn brown and prepare to harvest the seeds
  • Leave roughly 1 ft of stem attached to the flower head
  • Make sure that the paper bag is still securely tied onto the flower head. If it slips off as you remove and transport the Sunflower head, you may lose a significant number of seeds

Extracting oil from Sunflower seeds

In 1716, the British got success in oil extraction from seeds of the Sunflower, and from then on Sunflower seed oil had worldwide attention. This achievement made the Sunflower become an oil crop around the world. Sunflower seed oil is generally considered as a premium oil for its light color, rich unsaturated fatty acids, bland flavor, high smoke point, and low linolenic acid.

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Sunflower Seeds.
Sunflower Seeds.

Sunflower seed oil is cold-pressed. The cold-press entails will process to produce a light, flavorful oil suitable for some home cooking needs. Sunflower seed oil manufacture involves seeds cleaning, seeds pressing, seed de-hulling, seeds grinding, extracting crude oil, and finally crude oil refining.

Let’s jump into the step by step process of Sunflower oil extraction:

The extraction process of Sunflower oil

  1. Cleaning

The prepared Sunflower oil seeds are travel over magnets to remove dirt and unwanted trace metal before de-hulled and passed the special cleaning machine to remove other foreign matters.

  1. De-hulling

Sunflower seeds contain about 20%-30% hulls from the oil-type. Those hulls are sometimes removed before oil extraction to make sure the quality of both oil and Sunflower meal. When the seed has a moisture content of 5% after cleaning then de-hulling is done. The usual process consists of cracking the seeds by the mechanical action of centrifugal or pneumatic sheller, which can also be completed by abrasion. Then the resulting mixture is winnowed to separate the hulls from the kernels.

  1. Grinding

The prepared Sunflower oil seeds are passed over magnets to remove the dirt and trace metal before de-hulled. For more surface area to be pressed, the de-hulled seeds are grounded into a coarse meal of proper consistency by mechanized grooved rollers or hammer mills. Then the meal is heated to speed up the oil extraction process.

  1. Pressing

While during oil pressing, some waste and impurities are also released with the oil, and they should be removed before the oil can be edible. The heated metal is then fed gradually into a screw press, which increases the pressure continued as the meal passes through a slotted barrel. Pressure generally increases from 68,950 to 206,850 kilopascals as the oil is screwed out through the slots in the barrel, and is recovered back.

  1. Extracting additional oil with solvents

After the initial oil is recovered back from the screw press, the oil cake lasts in the press can be refined by solvent extraction to get maximum yield. A volatile hydrocarbon (the most commonly used one is hexane) dissolves the oil out of the oil cake, and then the oil is recovered by distilling the solvent out, and then the solvent passes through the matter to be collected at the bottom. 

  1. Removing solvent traces

90% of the solvent remaining in the extracted oil simply evaporates and it is collected for reuse. The remaining solvent is retrieved by the use of the stripping column. The oil is boiled by steam, and the lighter solvent floats upward, as it condenses, it is collected at the same time.

  1. Refining the Sunflower oil

Refining the oil is to remove color, odor, and bitterness. First, the oil is heated at temperatures between 40°C and 85°C. Then soap forms from the undesired fatty acids and the alkaline additive, and usually, it is removed by a centrifugal process. The oils are degummed by treating them with heated water at temperatures between 85°C and 95°C or with acidified water. This precipitates out most of the gums usually phosphatides. Then centrifugation is done to remove the dregs.

The final step involves deodorizing the oil bypassing the steam over hot oil placed in a vacuum at temperatures between 225°C and 250°C to distill the volatile and odor components from the oil. This allows the volatile components responsible for the taste and odor to evaporate from the oil. One percent citric acid is added to the oil to inactivate any trace metals present, hence preventing oxidation within the oil, thereby prolonging the shelf life of the oil.

  1. Packaging the oil

After completing all the process of refining Sunflower oil, the pure oil is normatively measured and packed in clean containers, and the usual ones are bottles for domestic sale, glass bottles, or cans for exports.

Sunflower oil manufacturing cost

The cost of starting a Sunflower seed oil factory is closely related to many factors such as oil mill capacity, process design, equipment selection, factory layout, automation degree of the production line. The bulk of the startup capital will be spent on leasing or acquiring a facility and also in purchasing oilseed oil extracting and processing machines. You are also expected to spend much on the purchase and servicing of distribution trucks, paying your employees, and settling utility bills.

Machinery and cost for manufacturing Sunflower oil 

You can extract the oil from seeds by using below equipment and cost to start:

  • Cleaning/screening machine which will cost up to 3.45lakh
  • Screw expeller will cost Rs 25,000 to 50,000
  • Cooker and filter press will cost Rs 60,000 to Rs 80,000
  • Storage tank for oil will cost up to Rs 50,000
  • If you want a sealing machine for packing the oil packets it will cost up to 3lakh
  • Employees salary and any payment of bills will cost up to 1lakh to 1.5lakh
  • Empty tins and bottles will cost Rs 10,000
  • For taxes, license and registration process will cost up to 1lakh
  • Marketing expenses will cost up to Rs 50,000
  • Any other miscellaneous expenses will include up to Rs 30,000
  • If your oil plant is rented then the start-up investment will include that too as per the size of the plant

The raw material needed for Sunflower oil manufacturing  

  • You can get seeds by planting your Sunflower plants. However, it may take some time for you to grow the seeds by yourself.
  • You can also buy that seed from the shopkeeper selling the seeds or from any farmers.
  • And also you will need empty tins and bottles.

Licenses and certification for the Sunflower oil business

You need many types of licenses and certifications before starting this business because you can sell your oil in the market only after getting the license and certification.

There are two types of licenses related to food items are given by the Government of India. One license is given by the Bureau of Indian Standards and the other license is given by FSSAI. Other than this, the state where you are starting this business, you may have to get many types of licenses from the government of that state.

The licenses required for a Sunflower oil manufacturing unit are:—

  • FSSAI license for state and central
  • GST
  • Income tax
  • MSME act
  • CLU-for land usage
  • Shop act license
  • Labor laws
  • Fire safety
  • Electricity
  • Environmental clearance
  • Trademarks

With all these documents you can go ahead and start your manufacturing unit.

The marketing potential for sunflower oil production business

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The marketing potential for sunflower oil production.
The marketing potential for sunflower oil production.

Irrespective of the fact that our Sunflower oil production plant is a standard one with a wide range of products that can favorably compete with other leading brands, we will still go ahead to intensify publicity for all our products and brand.

Our publicity and advertising strategy are not only for selling our products but also to effectively communicate our brand. Here are the platforms we support to promote and advertise.

  • Place adverts on both printed and electronic media platforms
  • Sponsor relevant community programs
  • Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc to promote our Sunflower oil brand
  • Distribute our business pamphlets and handbills in target areas
  • Position our Flexi banners at commercial positions in the location where we intend getting customers
  • Ensure that our Sunflower oil is well branded and that all our staff members wear our customized clothes, and all our official cars and distribution vans are customized and well branded

Benefits of using Sunflower oil

Sunflower oil is pale yellow and has a faint smell with a non-volatile nature. Its immensely growing popularity is because of the unsaturated fatty acids composition which is known to be extremely healthy. With healthy fatty acids like Linoleic acid, Palmitic acid, Oleic acid, Stearic acid, along with carotenoids, it has vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants as well. It is also rich in Vitamin E, Tocopherol, which is again an antioxidant and immunity-boosting vitamin.

Here are some amazing benefits of Sunflower oil:

  • Promotes heart health
  • Lowers cholesterol
  • Good for your skin
  • Energy booster
  • Gives beautiful hair
  • Strengthens your immune system
  • Improves digestion
  • Repairs the body
  • Fights with cancer 

Filtered top Sunflower oil brands in India

  • Fortune Sunlite Refined Sunflower oil
  • Sundrop lite oil
  • Emami healthy and tasty refined Sunflower oil
  • Sweekar refined Sunflower oil
  • Dhara Refined Sunflower oil
  • Healthkart cold-pressed organic Sunflower oil
  • Pure & sure organic Sunflower oil
  • Daana organic Sunflower oil
  • Freedom refined Sunflower oil

To reduce the input costs and make more profits, you can start commercial Sunflower Farming.


  1. I have leased a 92 hectares land in Randfontein area and would like to plant Sunflower for export market……. WHAT WOULD YOU ADVISE ME TO DO I. TERMS OF EXPENDITURE VERSUS INCOME TO BE MADE.

    I can secure an Investment of only R500K. Please advise


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