ANNATTO SEEDS (ORANGE)

ANNATTO SEEDS (ORANGE)

1. The tree is best known as the source of annatto, a natural orange-red condiment
(also called achiote or bijol) obtained from the waxy arils that cover its seeds.The
ground seeds are widely used in traditional dishes in Central and South America,
Mexico, and the Caribbean.
2. Annatto and its extracts are also used as an industrial food coloring to add yellow or
orange color to many products such as butter, cheese, margarine, ice creams,
meats, and condiments. North, Central, and South American natives originally used
the seeds to make red body paint and lipstick, as well as a spice. For this reason, the
Bixa orellana is sometimes called the lipstick tree.
3. Extensive research studies carried out in the last few decades have shown isolation
of several different classes of phytoconstituents including carotenoids,
apocarotenoids, sterols, aliphatic compounds, monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes,
triterpenoids, volatile oils and other miscellaneous compounds from all parts of this
plant. These phytochemicals exhibit a wide range of pharmacological activities that
include antibacterial, antifungal, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticancer,
enhanced gastrointestinal motility, neuropharmacological, anticonvulsant, analgesic,
and antidiarrheal activities.
4. Seeds are characterized by substantial amount of carotenoid compounds mainly
apocarotenoid bixin, nor-bixin and other less important cryptoxanthin, lutein,
zeaxanthin, and methylbixin
5. Fresh Bixa seeds produce beautiful light to dark orange shades on cotton, wool, silk
and all natural textile substrates by standardized dyeing process using different
combination of other mordants on fibers, fabric and garments with excellent fastness
properties.