Quality of Olive Oil
It is not easy to define the quality of olive oil, yet the quality is the defining aspect of the olive oil. When the quality is good, oil is defined as a healthy product to consume. Olive oil comes in various varieties and its quality varies from one variety to another.
When we specifically talk about the quality of olive oil, then there are various criteria that define it like: color, taste, smell, physical state, chemical composition, nutrition chart, cooking ability and much more. But, before falling upon the quality characteristics, it is important to first have a look at three general types of this oil: Virgin Olive Oil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Lampante Olive Oil.
Olive oil has three general types.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil:
This type is the purest form of olive oil. It does not contain any chemicals and harmful compounds, it is not heat processed and is obtained by the cold pressing method.
EVOO is rich in aroma, flavor, minerals, vitamins and antioxidants. These antioxidants are well known for their health benefits. EVOO is also known as unrefined olive oil.
Virgin Olive Oil:
Simple olive oil or also known as refined olive oil is obtained from the virgin oil by passing it through a number of processing series. It is almost tasteless, odorless and colorless as compared to EVOO. In comparison to EVOO, refined olive oil lacks the antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds.
Thus, EVOO is healthier than refined olive oil owing to its better nutritional profile.
Lampante Olive Oil:
This type of olive oil is of the worst quality. They have 2g of free oleic acid/ 100g of oil. They have unpleasant smell, flavor and is unfit for direct consumption. This type of olive is forbidden for direct sale, if it is for consumption purpose.
It’s nutrition value is far less than EVOO and if any virgin oils don’t meet their defined parameters, then they definitely fall under the lampante olive oil category.
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Quality Parameters of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Acidity of Olive Oil
Acidity is the measure of the presence of free fatty acids in the olive oil. As the refined oil and unrefined oil has different production criteria, so their acidity level is different as well.
An olive oil is extra virgin olive oil if its acidity is equal to or less than 0.8%, it is virgin olive oil if its acidity is equal or less than 0.2% and if the acidity level is higher than 0.25 then it is lampante olive oil.
Extra virgin olive oil with 0.3 acidity and extra virgin olive oil 0.2 are two premium products. These two are only produced and sold by a limited number of companies. Luckily, if you are interested then you can find these from our ‘Spanish Oil’ company which only deals with high quality and pure products.
This parameter indicates the level of oxygen present in the oil. The higher the oxygen level, the greater the risk is of the oxidation of the oil. The standard peroxide level is 20/ kg of oil.
UV absorption is a parameter that defines the purity of oil, as the purity can be affected during various industrial treatments. EVOO should have the level below or equal to 0.20 and virgin refined oil should have not more than 0.25.
Volatile compounds and water droplets can cause rancidity in oil. This parameter indicates that moisture and volatile content should not exceed the 0.15% level.
Smell, taste and sight comes under this parameter. These aspects are observed by the consumer and provides a great help in determining the quality of the oil.
Olive oil is well known for its enormous health benefits, but this all depends upon its quality. If the quality is high and meet its required parameters, then olive oil is fit to consume. If the quality is poor, then this olive oil will fail to serve its healthy purpose.
The market is full of companies that offer various varieties, but to trust which one is an enigma. Spanish Oil is one of the company from Spain (land of olive trees) that has earned the trust of its customers and is a worth visiting site. Do make a visit to our website and enjoy the premium pure olive oil which is not easy to find in the market.