Pentadesma butyracea butter is a vegetable fat obtained from the kernels of the P. butyracea tree. It is a potential source of fat for the food and cosmetics sectors. This study evaluated the quality characteristics of the cream and soap processed from the butter of P. butyracea in comparison to similar product from the Vitellaria paradoxa butter. The same cosmetic products were produced with P. butyracea and V. paradoxa butters. The two types of butter are extracted using the traditional procedure. The quality characteristics of P. butyracea products are assessed using the V. paradoxa products with reference. The aerobic mesophilic bacteria counts in V. paradoxa cream and P. butyracea cream were different (p≤0.05) being 2.77 and 2.05 log cfu/g, respectively. The yeasts and moulds, total coliforms, faecal coliforms, Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa were below detection level in the two types of creams. Significant differences were observed in the antimicrobial activity of the two types creams (p≤0.001). Consumers preferred the cream and soap of P. butyracea because the cream is yellow, softer on the skin, consistent with high hydrating power. The yellow colour, the pleasant aroma and the hardness of the P. butyracea soap, are key determining factors for its preference.
Key words: Pentadesma butyracea, shea, cream, soap, butter.
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