Extra-virgin olive oil is an excellent resource provided to us directly from nature and which can only be obtained through the mechanical process of milling olives and is consumed directly, without the need for any further processing or treatment. This makes it an oil for food that is extracted using only physical procedures (pressure and centrifuge). To offer a comparison, other categories of food oils are industrially refined after having been extracted using solvents, then undergo the removal of acids, colour and odours in a vacuum with a temperature reaching about 200 °C.
The infinite aromatic notes of extra-virgin olive oil (green or herby fruits, floral, almond, green apple, tomato, etc.) are part of a matrix of about 200 volatile compounds that combine during the natural mechanical extraction process.
Within their peculiar production regulations, PDO and PGI extra-virgin olive oils have specific indications regarding the aromatic notes that they must have in order for the product to receive its own specific certification.
Due to its particular composition, extra-virgin olive oil is the most stable vegetable oil with regard to oxidation and has great advantages over alternative products:
- it oxidises less, because it is rich in low saturated (monounsaturated) fats;
- it is easy to absorb because it is rich in oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid that resists oxidation, both during its shelf life and while cooking.