The world of olive oil can sometimes be a little tricky to navigate and understand. Here are some technical terms you might come across and their meanings.

  • Cold pressed:
    that the oil was not heated over a certain temperature (usually 80 °F (27 °C)) during processing, thus retaining more nutrients and undergoing less degradation.
  • Pomace:
    By-product of residual olive paste left after processing which still contains a variable percentage of water and oil depending on the processing method employed. Pomace is usually used by the extraction industry to obtain crude olive-pomace oil, or for other purposes.
  • Early Harvest:
    Oil made from olives at optimal ripeness at the beginning of the season.
  • Mono-varietal:
    olive oil made from just one variety of olive, as opposed to a blend of olives
  • IOC:
    International Olive Council
  • Smoking point:
    The peak temperature  that the oil starts to smoke, and a higher temperature than the smoke point means the oil starts to change in chemical make up and flavour. Light Olive Oil has the highest smoke point( approximately 242°C) in the olive oil family, which is why is it good for deep frying.
  • Polyphenals:
    a structural class of mainly organic chemicals which gives oil the bitter notes
  • Sensory testing:
    is a scientific discipline that applies principles of experimental design and statistical analysis to the use of human senses, e.g. sight, smell etc for the purposes of evaluating consumer products.
  • Fatty acid:
    any of a class of aliphatic acids, especially palmitic, stearic, or oleic acid, consisting of a long hydrocarbonchain ending in a carboxyl group that bonds to glycerol to form a fat.
  • Rancidity:
    Negative attribute of virgin olive oil. Flavour of oils which have undergone an intense process of oxidation
  • Oxidation:
    the process of oxidising, that is, to combine with oxygen