Pioneer Hi-Bred, a DuPont business based in Wilmington, Del., has received confirmation that Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency have approved its high-oleic soybean trait for cultivation and food and feed use in Canada.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration completed its review of high-oleic soybeans earlier this year. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is reviewing the trait.

Tests have shown Pioneer’s high-oleic soybean oil contains about 80% oleic acid. This high level increases the stability of the oil when used in frying and food processing. The high-oleic soybean trait, offered among the Pioneer brand Y Series soybean varieties, will be field tested in the United States and Canada this growing season. Potential Canadian registration of the first products may come in 2010.

The high-oleic soybean trait has more than three times as much heart-healthy monounsaturated fats than commodity soybeans, according to Pioneer Hi-Bred. It also has at least 20% less saturated fat than commodity soybean oil. Like low-linolenic soybean oil, high-oleic soybean oil eliminates the need for hydrogenation, which results in foods with negligible amounts of trans fats.

"This is a significant milestone in our effort to bring the high-oleic soybean trait to market," said Paul E. Schickler, Pioneer president and DuPont vice-president and general manager, of the Canadian approval. "We’re seeing strong results in field testing of soybeans with the high-oleic trait and strong interest from food companies looking for a new oil product with improved nutritional qualities and performance characteristics."

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