Optimizing the Extraction of Phenolic Compounds from Pistachio Hulls

Document Type : Research Article


1 Research Assistant, Pistachio Research Center, Horticulture Sciences Research Institute, Agriculture Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Rafsanjan, Iran

2 Researcher, Pistachio Research Center, Horticulture Sciences Research Institute, Agriculture Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Rafsanjan, Iran

3 Research Associate, Pistachio Research Center, Horticulture Sciences Research Institute, Agriculture Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Rafsanjan, Iran

4 Lab Expert, Pistachio Research Center, Horticulture Sciences Research Institute, Agriculture Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Rafsanjan, Iran


Pistachio hull, as the dominant component of pistachio processing wastes, is a source of phenolics with antioxidant properties. Extracting these compounds from pistachio wastes has recently attracted a lot of attention. The current study aimed to identify the optimal conditions for extracting phenolics from pistachio hulls. Firstly, some parameters such as different sample to solvent ratios (1:10, 1:20, and 1:40), extraction temperatures (25, 45, and 65°C), and duration times (1, 2, and 3 h) were evaluated under extracting solvent of water. The content of total phenolics and antioxidant activity were determined using spectrophotometric methods. The results indicated that the highest phenolics (~35 mg g-1) were extracted at 2 h extraction time, 65 °C, and the sample to solvent ratio of 1:10 (optimum condition by the solvent of water). Secondly, other organic solvents of ethanol, methanol, and acetone 50% were evaluated to identify the best solvent under optimal conditions. All of these organic solvents were more efficient than water in extracting total phenolics (with antioxidant property) from pistachio hulls. However, the highest amount of total phenolics (~47 mg g-1) was extracted by ethanol. Optimizing the extraction of phenolic compounds from pistachio hulls would be important in terms of reducing human and environmental risks caused by the waste accumulation, as well as producing naturally beneficial compounds and using them instead of synthetic antioxidants in the human diet.


Abrishami MH, Esmaeilpour A, Emami SY, Basirat M, Tajabadipour A, Hosseinifard SJ, Haghdel M, Hokmabadi H, ShakerArdekani A, Sedaghat R, Sedaghati N, Alavi SH, Mohammadi AH, Hashemirad H (2019) Iran's pistachio. Tehran, Jamee-No Publication. [In Persian]
Al-Farsi MA, Lee CY (2008) Optimization of phenolics and dietary fibre extraction from date seeds. Food Chemistry.108(3), 977-985.
Ambigaipalan P, de Camargo AC, Shahidi F (2017) Identification of phenolic antioxidants and bioactives of pomegranate seeds following juice extraction using HPLC-DAD-ESI-MSn. Food Chemistry. 221, 1883-1894.
Aminian A, Shakerardekani A (2009) Pistachio wastes and their uses. Pistachio Research Center, Rafsanjan. [In Persian]
Babaei L, Sharifani MM, Darvishzadeh R, Abbaspour N, Henareh M (2021) Impact of drought stress on photosynthetic response of some pear species. International Journal of Horticultural Science and Technology. 8(4), 353-69.
Bagheripour E, Rouzbehan Y, Alipour D (2008) Effects of ensiling, air-drying and addition of polyethylene glycol on in vitro gas production of pistachio by-products. Animal Feed Science and Technology. 146(3-4), 327-336.
Barreca D, Laganà G, Leuzzi U, Smeriglio A, Trombetta D, Bellocco E (2016) Evaluation of the nutraceutical, antioxidant and cytoprotective
properties of ripe pistachio (Pistacia vera L., variety Bronte) hulls. Food Chemistry. 196, 493-502.
Cheniany M, Ebrahimzadeh H, Vahdati K, Preece J, Masoudinejad A, Mirmasoumi M (2013) Content of different groups of phenolic compounds in microshoots of Juglans regia cultivars and studies on antioxidant activity. Acta Physiologia Plantarum. 35, 443–450.
Erşan S, Güçlü Üstündağ OZ, Carle R, Schweiggert RM (2016) Identification of phenolic compounds in red and green pistachio (Pistacia vera L.) hulls (exo-and mesocarp) by HPLC-DAD-ESI-(HR)-MSn. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 64(26), 5334-5344.
Erşan S, Üstündağ ÖG, Carle R, Schweiggert RM (2017) Determination of pistachio (Pistacia vera L.) hull (exo-and mesocarp) phenolics by HPLC-DAD-ESI/MSn and UHPLC-DAD-ELSD after ultrasound-assisted extraction. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis. 62, 103-114.
Fallahi HR, Ghorbany M, Samadzadeh A, Aghhavani-Shajari M, Asadian AH (2016) Influence of arbuscular mycorrhizal inoculation and humic acid application on growth and yield of Roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa L.) and its mycorrhizal colonization index under deficit irrigation. International Journal of Horticultural Science and Technology. 3(2), 113-28.
Foroogh-Ameri N (1997) Determining the nutritional value and digestibility of dried and siloed pistachio hulls. MSc thesis, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan. [In Persian]
Gam DH, Kim SY, Kim JW (2020) Optimization of ultrasound-assisted extraction condition for phenolic compounds, antioxidant activity, and epigallocatechin gallate in lipid-extracted microalgae. Molecules. 25(3), 454.
Goli AH, Barzegar M, Sahari MA (2005) Antioxidant activity and total phenolic compounds of pistachio (Pistachia vera) hull extracts. Food Chemistry. 92(3), 521-525.
Habibi A, Yazdani N, Koushesh Saba M, Vahdati K (2021) Ascorbic acid preserved phenolic compounds of cold stressed fresh walnut kernels. Acta Horticulturae 1315, 665-668.
Habibie A, Yazdani N, Saba MK, Vahdati K (2019) Ascorbic acid incorporated with walnut green husk extract for preserving the postharvest quality of cold storage fresh walnut kernels. Scientia Horticulturae 245, 193-199.
Hokmabadi H (2018) Pistachio wastes in Iran and the potential to recapture them in value chain. Pistachio and Health Journal. 1(4), 1-12.
Hosseini N, Rezanejad F, Zamani Bahramabadi E (2022) Effects of Soil Texture, Irrigation Intervals, and Cultivar on some Nut Qualities and Different Types of Fruit Blankness in Pistachio (Pistacia vera L.). International Journal of Horticultural Science and Technology. 9(1), 41-53.
Kabir F, Tow WW, Hamauzu Y, Katayama S, Tanaka S, Nakamura S (2015) Antioxidant and cytoprotective activities of extracts prepared from fruit and vegetable wastes and by-products. Food Chemistry. 167, 358-362.
Khodadadi F, Tohidfar M, Mohayeji M, Dandekar AM, Leslie CA, Kluepfel D, Butterfield T, Vahdati K (2016) Induction of polyphenol oxidase in walnut and its relationship to the pathogenic response to bacterial blight. Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science. 141(2), 119-124.
Liu R, Mabury SA (2020) Synthetic phenolic antioxidants: A review of environmental occurrence, fate, human exposure, and toxicity. Environmental Science & Technology. 54(19), 11706-11719.
Mokhtarpour A, Naserian AA, Valizadeh R, Mesgaran MD (2014) Extraction of phenolic compounds and tannins from pistachio by-products. Annual Research & Review in Biology. 4(8), 1330-1338.
Mokrani A, Madani, K (2016) Effect of solvent, time and temperature on the extraction of phenolic compounds and antioxidant capacity of peach (Prunus persica L.) fruit. Separation and Purification Technology. 162, 68-76.
Mortazavi SH, Azadmard-Damirchi S, Mahmudi R, Sowti M, Mahmoudi R (2015) Chemical composition and antioxidant properties of hull and core of Pistacia khinjuk stocks. Iranian Food Science and Technology Research Journal. 11(4), 408-419.
Nazoori F, ZamaniBahramabadi E, Mirdehghan SH, Yousefi M (2022) Preharvest Application of Sulfur as Pesticide on Fresh Hull and Kernel of Pistachio (Pistacia vera L.). International Journal of Horticultural Science and Technology. 9(1), 117-29.
Norozi M, ValizadehKaji B, Karimi R, Nikoogoftar Sedghi M (2019) Effects of foliar application of potassium and zinc on pistachio (Pistacia vera L.) fruit yield. International Journal of Horticultural Science and Technology. 6(1), 113-23.
Özbek HN, Halahlih F, Gögüs F, Yanik DK, Azaizeh H (2018) Pistachio (Pistacia vera L.) hull as a potential source of phenolic compounds: Evaluation of ethanol-water binary solvent extraction on antioxidant activity and phenolic content of pistachio hull extracts. Waste and Biomass Valorization. doi: 10.1007/s12649-018-0512-6
Pinelo M, Rubilar M, Jerez M, Sineiro J, Núñez MJ (2005) Effect of solvent, temperature, and solvent-to-solid ratio on the total phenolic content and antiradical activity of extracts from different components of grape pomace. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 53(6), 2111-2117.
Rajaei A, Barzegar, M, Hamidi, Z, Sahari M (2010) Optimization of extraction conditions of phenolic compounds from pistachio (Pistachia vera) green hull through response surface method. Journal of Agricultural Science and Technology. 12, 605-615.
Riciputi Y, Diaz-de-Cerio E, Akyol H, Capanoglu E, Cerretani L, Caboni MF, Verardo V (2018) Establishment of ultrasound-assisted extraction of phenolic compounds from industrial potato by-products using response surface methodology. Food Chemistry. 269, 258-263.
Shakerardekani A, Molaei M (2020) Post-harvest pistachio waste: Methods of its reduction and conversion. Pistachio and Health Journal. 3(2), 40-51.
Shamshiri MH, Hasani MR (2015) Synergistic accumulative effects between exogenous salicylic acid and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus in pistachio (Pistacia vera cv. Abareqi) seedlings under drought stress. International Journal of Horticultural Science and Technology. 2(2), 151-160.
Sharifkhah M, Bakhshi D, Pourghayoumi M, Abdi S, Hokmabadi H (2020) Effect of pollination time on yield and antioxidant properties of some pistachio cultivars. International Journal of Horticultural Science and Technology. 7(1), 51-8.
Taghvaei M, Jafari SM (2015) Application and stability of natural antioxidants in edible oils in order to substitute synthetic additives. Journal of Food Science and Technology. 52(3), 1272-1282.
Wang W, Xiong P, Zhang H, Zhu Q, Liao C, Jiang G (2021) Analysis, occurrence, toxicity and environmental health risks of synthetic phenolic antioxidants: A review. Environmental Research. 201, 111531.
Yoo KM, Lee KW, Park JB, Lee HJ, Hwang IK (2004) Variation in major antioxidants and total antioxidant activity of Yuzu (Citrus junos Sieb ex Tanaka) during maturation and between cultivars. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 52(19), 5907-5913.