The acidity stand alone says not much about the olive oil quality.
It is just one of the several quality criteria that determine how good the olive oil is.
The acidity is also not perceptible in the taste and should not be confused with the burning in the throat neither with oxidisation. The consumer should focus on the taste and the aroma of the olive oil.
The acidity is a chemical parameter that increases with time and indicates how much “free oleic acid” is present in olive oil at a specific moment. Oleic acid is “freed” from the “olive oil molecules” (triglycerides) as a result of an ongoing hydrolysis that starts from the moment the olive fruit is on the tree. The upper limit of acidity in “Extra Virgin” category is 0,8%, which means that in 100grams of oil there can be no more than 0,8 grams of “free oleic acid”.
No. The burning in the throat is an indication of the freshness, and is due to the presence of oleocanthal, (where “canth” in English means burning) which is the emprirical name given to an aldehydic form of the aglycone of oleuropein.
Olive Oil oxidisation (fatty acid break down) is a natural and inevitable
process which expresses the degree of ageing of the olive oil.
The oxidisation is accelerated mainly when the olive oil comes in contact with light (e.g. when is placed in
transparent containers) or when it comes in contact with air (oxygen).
The more oxidized the olive oil gets, the more its quality is affected. Oxidisation becomes perceptible
in the sensory, as it gives a characterstic bad taste and odour. An oxidised olive oil is called rancid.
The degree of oxidization can be determined in the laboratory through the measurement of:
Νο. The olive oil quality is not determined from its colour, provided that it ranges from green to golden-yellow. Green colour indicates that:
Golden-yellow colour indicates that:
Because you save money and is healthier to use compared to seedoils. High frying temperatures of 180 oC exceed the critical point of most seedoils, which decompose into toxic substances and therefore being unsuitable for re-use. However, the critical point of olive oil is at 210 oC, which enables to re-use several times (up to 3 times) without the risk of forming hazardous substances.
The categories of olive oil are the following:
a) Extra Virgin Olive Oil
b) Virgin Olive Oil
c) Olive Oil
d) Pomace Olive Oil.
The term “Virgin” denotes that this category of olive oil is produced only with
mechanical treatment, i.e. it is not subject to chemical treatment as it happens in the category “Olive Oil”
or in the category “Pomace Olive Oil”.
The term “Extra” denotes the superior quality compared to the category “Virgin Olive Oil” in terms of its chemical (tighter limits) and organoleptic (no defects) analysis.
Olives collected from the ground (like over-ripened olives that fall from the tree) and olives severely affected from insects give to the olive oil a bad smell and taste and a very high acidity. As a result the olive oil is not suitable for human consumption and is called Lampante. The Lampante olive must be refined (chemical treatment) in order to remove these defects. The end-product of the refinement process is an odourless, tasteless and colourless (transparent) liquid, which is then mixed in a specific proportion with Virgin or Extra Virgin olive oil in order to add some colour and taste. Hence in the labelling of this product it is stated that it is derived from refined oils.
Olives are processed under cold temperature in the oil-mills to extract (cold extraction) an end-product being either extra virgin, virgin or Lampante oil. As a result of this process, we also receive a pulp as by-product. The pulp which contains the olive flesh, pits and entrapped residue oil goes to another facility where it is processed with the aid of solvents under high temperatures to extract (second extraction) the residue oil. The residue oil is then refined to remove the defects. The refined “residue” oil obtained through the chemical treatment described above is then mixed with virgin olive oil to get the Pomace Olive Oil.
Organic olive oil is the outcome of Organic Farming, i.e. the cultivation of olives in the absence of synthetic pesticides and chemical fertilisers and therefore has no negative impact on the envirnment neither on human health. The olive oil obtained by adhering to those practises receives an Organic certification from authorised bodies.
The abbreviation stands for Protected Designation of Origin and is a ertification (provided by the Ministry of Rural Development and Food) that the specific extra virgin olive oil originates from a specific area, specific certified farmers, and has particular quality characteristics. The PDO certification also requires ISO 22000 to be implemented both in the oil-mill and the bottling facility.
The olive grove of Kolymvari is situated in the Chania district in Crete and comprises several villages of which the northern one (that marks its border) is Kolymvari. The Kolymvari olive grove produces excelent quality olive oil which is worldwide renowned. It is an olive oil of medium intensity in the fruity element, of medium thickness (viscocity) and is certified as PDO product.
Generally speaking there are certain geographical areas producing superior quality olive oil, which is due to the variety cultivated, the soil properties and climate conditions. However there are many factors which can deteriorate olive oil quality until it reaches the consumer.
Extensive medical reports are dedicated on the positive impact that olive oil has on human health. The natural anti-oxidants (e.g. phenols) present in olive oil protect our cells from oxidant stress, active oxygen and free roots, which are the main causes for cancer diseases. The natural anti-oxidants also protect elderly people from brain and central nervous system malfunctions. Moreover, olive oil helps to stabilise the good cholesterol levels, which prevent arteriosclerosis. This is due to the mono-unsaturated fatty acids (instead of saturated fatty acids present in animal fats, like butter) found in olive oil that contribute to the reduction of bad cholesterol, which is the main cause of cardiovascular diseases.