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Sunflower oil history

Sunflower oil is highly demanded food stuff today. But who has thought up for the first time to make it from sunflower seeds?

Sunflower has been delivered to Europe in 1569 as an adornment plant, and initially nobody expected any practical advantage from it. The only thing that it was possible to take from sunflowers was its tasty seeds.
The sunflower has got to Russia thanks to the tsar Peter I who has brought it from Holland, and at first this plant served only as adornments of gardens too.

In 1829 it became known that a peasant Daniel Bokarev from the Alekseevskaya sloboda village of the Voronezh guberniya (governorate) has extracted excellent vegetable oil from sunflower seeds by means of a self-made manual oil mill. That receipt has caught the interest of a merchant Papushin, and in 1833 he with the permission of the lord of Alekseyevka, count Sheremetev and with assistance of Bokarev, has built the first factory on sunflower oil extraction. To spring of 1836 the sunflower was planted round all Alekseevskaya sloboda village, and already in 1860 there were about 120 oil pressing companies in this area.

Sunflower oil has quickly acquired its popularity in Russia, to a large extent – due its use was not forbidden during the Lent. To the middle of XIX century in many regions of the Voronezh and Saratov governorates the sunflower has occupied 30—40 % of cultivated areas.

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