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Industrial Crops and Products
Vol. 64, 2015, Pages: 59–67

Exploitation of Apiaceae Family plants as valuable renewable source of essential oils containing crops for the production of fine chemicals

Epameinondas Evergetis, Sofia D. Koulocheri, Serkos A. Haroutounian

Agricultural University of Athens, School of Agricultural Production, Engineering and Environment, Faculty of Animal Sciences and Aquaculture, Iera odos 75, Athens 11855, Greece.

Abstract

Twenty-one indigenous in Greece Apiaceae taxa were collected from the wild and their potencies as Essential Oils (EOs) producing crops as well as novel renewable sources for the production of Fine Chemicals (FCs) were evaluated. Their EOs and FCs production capabilities were estimated on the basis of several experimental and field data, identifying the two Cachrys taxaC. cristata and C. ferulacea as the most potent EO producing crops with estimated production yields per hectare exceeding the 30 L for each oil, of which 19 L is myrcene in C. cristata and 8.5 L γ-terpinene in C. ferulacea. Furthermore, the following five taxa were identified for first time as potential EOs producing industrial crops: Bifora testiculataChaerophyllum aromaticumEchinophora tenuifoliaOpopanax chironium and Ferulago nodosa. In total, thirteen EOs retrieved from twelve different taxa were determined as potent renewable resources for the production of sixteen environmentally important FCs, such as aldehydes, esters, aromatic compounds, unsaturated hydrocarbons, monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes. Among FCs investigated herein, nine constitute mature commercial subjects. From them, seven being produced synthetically and only 2 are retrieved from natural resources. Additionally, we have identified for the first time 4 plants as renewable sources for the retrieval of the commercially important molecules 2-dodecen-1-al, myrcene, cis-ocimene, methyl eugenol, α-phellandrene and terpinolene, compounds with price fluctuation varying 2.12–0.02 €/mL.

Keywords: Apiaceae; Essential Oil; Fine Chemicals; Myrcene; Aldehydes; Unsaturated hydrocarbons.

 
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