Natural Tocopherols:

  • Are antioxidants with Vitamin E activity. In “vivo” they are antioxidants for the body. When used as a product ingredient, they prevent rancidity and improve shelf stability.
  • Were first identified in 1936 when they were linked to fertility in a rat study. “Toco” means “childbirth”,“pherein” means “to carry”, and “ol” signifies an alcohol.
  • Are sourced from seed oils like soybean, canola, rapeseed, or sunflower.  They can be obtained from sources that are either non-GMO or GMO. Regardless of source, due their high level of refinement, there is no protein material detected in them and they test PCR negative.
  • Exist in 8 different naturally occurring forms, each form having a different activity, found in 2 groups as follows:
    • Group 1: Tocopherols
      4 forms: alpha, beta, gamma, delta
    • Group 2: Tocotrienols
      4 forms: alpha, beta, gamma, delta
  • Are typically transparent, viscous, oily liquids with slightly characteristic odor and having colors ranging between light yellow to reddish brown. Mixed tocopherol powders are made by spraying the oil onto either a gum or starch carrier.
  • Are not organic, but are allowable in organic products when use of rosemary oil is not suitable, and have no usage limits.
  • Alpha Tocopherol also exists as a synthetic, fully racemized form synthesized from petrochemicals. This mixture is only 1/3 to 2/3 as biologically active as natural alpha tocopherol, and has limited antioxidant efficacy in food formulations.
  • Sunflower oil is used to make the blended concentrates. Our blends contain only natural tocopherols and sunflower oil.
  • For larger volumes, other diluent oils, such as soy or canola, can be used on a custom basis, use the contact link to send an inquiry.
Organic Tech FAQ

Natural Tocopherols are NOT:

  • Antimicrobials
  • Toxic
  • Able to reverse oxidation in foods

What are Mixed Tocopherols?

Mixed tocopherols are a combination of the alpha, beta, gamma and delta form of the tocopherol group. They are typically derived from soy or rapeseed and are used as an antioxidant to stabilize products, improving shelf stability and preventing rancidity.

What is Vitamin E?

The concentrated alpha form of the tocopherol group. It is used for supplementation in humans and animals, because it is preferentially absorbed and accumulated in biological systems. It can be obtained in the alcohol or acetate form. Learn more about PrairiOL™ Natural Vitamin E Concentrates.

Do you have Tocotrienols?

Organic Technologies only manufactures and sells products from the tocopherols group.

What is PrairiOX™?

Organic Technologies makes natural Mixed Tocopherols under the brand name PrairiOX™.

What is PrairiOL™?

Organic Technologies makes natural Vitamin E concentrates under the brand name PrairiOL™.

Where do your raw materials come from?

Our raw materials are derived from North American soybean distillate. Oil is extracted from the soybeans, refined, and then the tocopherols are extracted; all part of the oil refining process.

Do your products qualify for the non-GMO project verify - Butterfly logo?

Our soy-derived products originate from GM soybeans.

Can I get samples?

Our policy is to no longer provide complimentary samples. You can purchase 100 g samples by visiting our shopping site.

What are the components of your blends?

Sunflower oil is used to make the blended concentrates. Our blends contain only natural tocopherols and sunflower oil.

Can you send spec sheets and COAs?

Yes. We have product specifications, quality statements, and COAs for our products. Technical documents can be found on our website for both mixed tocopherols and Vitamin E.

What is the difference between synthetic and Natural Vitamin E?

Natural Vitamin E is derived from vegetable oil seeds. Synthetic Vitamin E is produced from petrochemicals and has a different structure. Twice as much of the synthetic tocopherol is needed to equal the performance of the natural tocopherol.

Are your tocopherol products non-GMO?

Our soy derived tocopherol products are GMO-free, which means no genetically modified proteins are detected in the product and they test PCR negative. They are not non-GMO because the source of the raw material comes from GM soybeans grown in North America.

How can I tell a natural from a synthetic vitamin E on a label?

Consumers can identify the differences by looking on the ingredient label:

  • Natural = d alpha tocopherol alcohol or d alpha tocopheryl acetate
  • Synthetic products are identified on labels by a lowercase “L” added as well as being only available as the acetate form, hence the altered spelling of tocopheryl. Synthetic = dl alpha tocopheryl acetate.
  • Can be easily remembered since Synthetic = dl = delivers less.

How are natural tocopherols described on ingredient labels?

Always check with your legal or regulatory expert on allowable label language.  For your reference, our customers have told us that they have used some of the following ideas:

Natural Mixed Tocopherols (Natural Vitamin E)
Vitamin E (mixed tocopherols)
Mixed Tocopherols added to retain freshness
Vitamin E for freshness

PrairiOX Tocopherols are derived from soy and we are hesitant to introduce it to our product.

Most natural tocopherols (vitamin E and mixed tocopherols) are extracted from soy oils. The process involves first separating the flour and proteins from the oil. Then the oil is further refined to extract tocopherols. The USDA does not consider tocopherols from soy an allergen, because it is a highly refined oil. There are, however, tocopherols available that are derived from rapeseed or sunflower. There is no way to determine if a tocopherol is/is not derived from soy on a label, unless the manufacturer makes some sort of non-soy claim on the product.

How to choose between an oil, or a powder?

When deciding on an oil versus a powder it is important to consider the composition of the product being preserved. For example, if your product is a combination of dry ingredients, then a powder is the obvious choice. On the other hand, an oil might be a better choice to combine into the liquid phase of a nutrition bar or baked good.

When do I add the mixed tocopherols?

Always add a mixed tocopherol as early into the manufacturing process as possible because tocopherols work to prevent oxidation better than to correct it.

Why would I want to use a less concentrated PrairiOX product compared to a higher concentration?

Comparing the liquid oil products, customers with smaller batch sizes prefer the lower percentages of PrairiOX because it is diluted to be less viscous and flow easier, making measurement of small amounts more accurate. Note, however, that the 80D and 90G products do not have any diluent added. In some label applications, it is required that the diluent material is added to the product ingredient list.

Are your products Kosher? Halal?

Yes, all of our products are both Kosher and Halal.

Do you have a question about Tocopherols?