Linseed Oil - an important ingredient for various industries


The origin of the flourishing Belgian linseed oil industry is closely related to the linen textile industry for which linseed was traditionally grown in the area.

The seeds were crushed to produce linseed oil for the coatings industry, printing inks, linoleum, etc. The remainder, linseed cake, was used as cattle feed and is still considered as a valuable feed ingredient. The growing importance of economical production of linseed oil, together with selection and improvement of the linseed species have led to linseed oil varieties with an oil content of over 40%.

The linseeds for European production are mainly coming from Kazakhstan and Canada.

Refined linseed oil

Refined Linseed Oil is a pure raw linseed oil that has been heat-stabilised for further thermal processing during the production of resins, varnishes, polymerised Linseed oil and other binders. Algol Chemicals Linseed Oil supplier Scaldis operates a “De Smet” continuous physical refinery where the oil is refined in three stages. The first stage is degumming by centrifugal separation, followed by bleaching by contact with bleaching earth and eventually neutralisation by distillation. 

Refined Linseed Oil is often used in further processes where vegetable drying oil is polymerised or co-polymerised into a varnish or a resin.

Boiled Linseed Oil

Boiled Linseed Oil is produced by the polymerisation of Raw Linseed Oil at moderate temperatures under controlled oxidation, combined with an incorporation of catalysts (metal dryers or “siccatives”). The chemical incorporation of molecular oxygen in the oil gives an increased reactivity with pigments and a greatly improved and standardised drying time (12 to 24 hours). The main applications for Boiled Linseed Oil are timber treatment and wood preservation. It can also be used directly on steel for anti-corrosion, as waterproofer for concrete and terracotta and as primer in paints but also in putty and sealants.

Polymerised linseed oil

The polymerisation of Refined Linseed Oil at high temperatures under vacuum protects the color and results in high viscosity linseed oils in various viscosities. Further processing with Refined Linseed Oil yields medium and low viscosity linseed oils. These processed linseed oils have excellent pigment wetting and dispersing capabilities and they are a preferred and very effective intermediate between modern short to medium long resins and different types of pigments.

Thanks to their bodied aspect and drying capacities, Polymerised Linseed Oils are a functional ingredient in various coatings related products. They can be used in traditional wood and floor sealing varnishes, enamels and house paints to improve flow, gloss and durability. Low viscosity linseed oils can partially replace refined oils as starting material to reduce the process time in the production of alkyd resins and varnishes. High viscosity linseed oils can be used as sole binder in flat paints and primers, and as an additive in heatset printing inks to improve the drying and adhesion.


Algol Chemicals linseed oil supplier Scaldis-Ruien started crushing oil seeds in the beginning of 20th century. Thanks to continuous process improvements and focus on processing Linseed, Linseed oil and Derivatives, Scaldis is nowadays recognised as one of the leading producers and exporters of these raw materials for the coatings industry.  

Scaldis has put a lot of effort in optimizing their production in terms of cost efficiency, product availability and securing consistent quality. Through their location at the river Schelde (in Latin: Scaldis), their facilities are easy to reach by barges but also the end-product is cost-efficiently sent out to the customers. The seeds are transported with over 1000T barges along the river and with multiple linseed silos they can keep up the same linseed oil quality despite the differences between linseed batches from different origins. The quality and performance is constantly monitored by an online monitoring system.

Experience: Over 100 years

Linseed oil: 25 - 30KT p.a.

Export countries: 65 worldwide

5 N-IR quality control points: Product feed, internal checks, final products

Applications: E.g. printing inks, alkyd resins, linoleum, sealants, paints.

Polymerised linseed oil:  All viscosities from 0,75P to 450P

Table 1. Scaldis in figures


Algol Chemicals has been working closely with Scaldis-Ruien since 1990. We’re convinced about their product quality and their active and customer-centric way of operating. Linseed Oil itself is a good environmental choice, as it originates from renewable sources. It is biodegradable except for Boiled Linseed oil which is anyway non hazardous.

With the help of linseed oil based products like AlgolinTM, traditional creosote based wood treatments can be replaced with far safer options.


Tags:  Paints