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 Post subject: Fake Olive Oil
PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 1:19 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 1:03 am
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Location: Portland, OR
I just finished reading Extra Virginity, a book about the Olive Oil business, primarily olive oil fraud. Lately this has become part of the internet rumor mill again, with references to the 2010 UC Davis report. Here's some takeaways from the book (which you should totally read) on fake olive oil:

1. Extra Virgin olive oil is fake in any of 4 ways, from the most to the least common:
a. labelled as Italian or Greek but grown somewhere else
b. real olive oil, but low-quality "deodorized" pomace or "lampante*" oil
c. olive oil adulterated with nut or seed oils
d. not olive oil at all, really canola oil with food coloring and flavorings

2. The majority of Italian Extra Virgin olive oil sold (in the US or anywhere else) is fake in at least one of those four ways, including premium brands.

3. You're more likely to get the authentic article if you buy California or Australian EV, because those two countries have more stringent standards than the EU (yes, really).

4. If you're buying EV for less than $15/liter, it's almost certainly adulterated**.

More info on the author's website: http://www.truthinoliveoil.com/

(* "lampante" == "suitable only for burning in a lamp". Based on the grading of olive oils invented in the Roman Empire)

(** there are some exceptions. Costco's glass-bottle EVOO, which is sold only seasonally, seems to be authentic (at least virgin, if not EV), and sells for $13/liter)

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 Post subject: Re: Fake Olive Oil
PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 4:59 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2011 8:05 pm
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Location: Chico, CA
Josh, does it say anything about Spanish olive oils? I grew up with those and still prefer them. However, I now use only CA ranch olive oil which is grown close to me. Arbequina for drizzle and regular EVOO for everything else. So happy Costco carries them here.

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 Post subject: Re: Fake Olive Oil
PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 6:21 pm 
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Alina,

Not a lot. Mostly he has a short chapter about the mass-produced Picual olive oil from Jaen, much of which is shipped to Italy to be re-labelled as Italian oil. Thanks to the factory farming in Jaen, Picual has become the "white zinfandel" of EVOO. There are good producers who make good high-class Spanish olive oil, but it's not the rule.

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 Post subject: Re: Fake Olive Oil
PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 7:50 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:45 pm
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Location: Ottawa, ON
TheFuzzy wrote:
(** there are some exceptions. Costco's glass-bottle EVOO, which is sold only seasonally, seems to be authentic (at least virgin, if not EV), and sells for $13/liter)


That makes me feel validated, I buy a S**t ton of that when its there, it is damn fine OO IMO. Been out for a few months now though. I've bought their "Solon" and it seems OK. It's claimed to be greek I believe.

I recently bought a bottle at a local store that I ended up pouring out. Noticeably rancid, and I'm no connoisseur.


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 Post subject: Re: Fake Olive Oil
PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 11:47 pm 
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Paul,

Yeah, I did some online research before buying it. Note that the oil in the plastic bottles is fake, though. That is, it's olive oil but not virgin.

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 Post subject: Re: Fake Olive Oil
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2017 9:14 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 07, 2010 8:41 pm
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Location: Near Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I get mine from a friend who has olive orchards in Greece and they ship it over here every year. 15 litre steel tin for $150 so a great deal and excellent oil. So unless their family in Greece is pulling a fast one on them I'm going with it being real.


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