Carnauba Wax is a vegetable wax made from the leaves of a palm tree called "Carnuba" ("Copernicia cerifera.")
It's a yellowish-green wax that occurs on the underside of new or young leaves of the tree. To harvest the wax, the leaves are cut off, shredded and dried, then then beaten to get the wax to flake off.
The flakes are then melted and filtered, then the wax is moulded into blocks, packed and shipped. Twenty leaves will yield about 1 pound (450g) of the wax.
Carnuba wax is used:
- to make the eyes on Peeps;
- in chocolate, to coat fruit with in North America;
- in chocolate and in candies as a glaze in the EU;
- as a coating on dental floss;
- to coat disposable plates.
The Carnuba palm tree is native to Brazil.
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Copernicia cerifera (Scientific Name)