Oleochemicals are made from vegetable and animal oils and fats and/or petrochemical feedstocks.

The major process for transforming animal and vegetable oils and fats into oleochemicals is hydrolysis, the splitting of natural triglycerides into crude glycerine and crude mixed fatty acids, under the influence of water, temperature and pressure.

Fatty acids are the major oleochemicals derived from animal and vegetable oils and fats.

The OECD has published guidance for characterising oleochemical substances for assessment purposes. Follow this guidance when you are identifying oleochemical substances for REACH and CLP purposes.

Further support can be found through the European Oleochemical and Allied products Group (APAG), a sector group of the European Council of the Chemical industry (CEFIC).