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The Importance of Shea Butter Grades.

March 14, 2016


BIO-ACTIVE GRADES of SHEA BUTTER (From the American Institute of Shea Butter)


Shea Butter comes in different grades: Grade A; Grade B; Grade C; Grade D; or Grade F.



When laboratory analysis is done, grade is determined by the presence or absence of various nutrients:



Grade A is the highest and best quality for cosmetics and personal industry.

Grade D is missing most of the valuable nutrients.

The highest grades are awarded to those butters with the largest Bio-active fraction (5% and above), a good safety screen, and rancidity value below 10. To that end, only the best preparation of unrefined Shea butter can earn the Grade A status.

Due to the limited amount of the Bio-active fraction preserved during the refining process, refined Shea Butter scores are typically grade C, sometimes Grade D, but almost never Grade A. and rarely Grade B.


Grade F is reserved for Shea Butter not fit for human use. Grade F Shea is contaminated by micro organisms (such as mould, yeast or coli form bacteria) or contaminated with heavy metals (such as lead or mercury..