Soap production receipe from “Handbook on Jatropha Curcas FACT Foundation”
It is fairly easy to produce soap from vegetable oil . (Technically spoken the triglycerides of the plant oil are converted to salts of metal ions (natrium, potassium) and fatty acids (stearate, palmitate).)
The components necessary for soap making, and their ratios, are:
1 liter of plant oil,
0,75 liter of water
150 g of caustic soda
Adding less water gives a harder soap, adding more water requires addition of flour or starch to get a consistence that is solid enough. As the ingredients are relatively cheap and the soap can generally be sold at a good price, soap making can be an attractive option. The outline of the recipe is as follows:
· Prepare a solution of the caustic soda by dissolving the soda into the water (never mix these components the other way around – risk of burning!)
· Stir until everything has dissolved. The bowl will get hot, cool it using cold water at the outside, or just let it cool down for a while.
· Pour the oil into a bowl and put it beside the bowl of caustic soda solution.
· Pour the caustic soda solution slowly into the oil, stirring all the time. Immediately the mixture will go white and soon it becomes creamy.
· Continue stirring until the mixture is like mayonnaise. This is the moment to add additives like glycerin, perfume etc.
· If the mixture is still creamy, pour it into a mould, where it can harden overnight. The moulds can be made from a wooden tray or a cardboard box, lined with a plastic sheet. Alternatively, consider using convenient and attractive shapes like small plastic bowls.
.The mixture hardens overnight in tropical temperatures, or in several days in temperate regions. Then it can be released from the mould and cut if necessary. For good sale and use the pieces of soap should not be larger than 150 gram or 6 to 8 to 2 cm.
· Even after this first hardening the soap continues to mature for some time. It mshould be stored for some two weeks on shelf before sale.
· Wrapping the soap into a nice paper or clear plastic will add greatly to its sales value!
· Last but not least, don’t forget to clean all the used utensils properly, as caustic soda is rather aggressive and Jatropha PPO is toxic.