TYPES OF OLIVE OIL
EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL (EVOO) is a completely natural product that is obtained directly from the fruit of the olive tree. To extract EVOO, the olives are crushed and pressed without the use of heat or chemicals. This way, all the properties of the fruit are preserved and the health benefits remain intact. This oil is unrefined and is the highest grade available because it has the best flavor, odor, and right amount of acidity amongst all kinds of olive oil. Since it is the purest form, it is the most expensive olive oil.
Spain produces more extra virgin olive oil than any other country. Spanish olive oil is also regarded as having the best quality.
VIRGIN OLIVE OIL is processed like extra virgin oil but its olives may not be of the highest quality. It has a higher acidity level than extra virgin olive oil and also has good taste.
PURE OLIVE OIL is refined olive oil. It is chemically treated to neutralize the strong taste (characterized as defects) and acid content (characterized as amino acids) of olive oil. It is usually a blend of refined olive oil and virgin olive oil.
POMACE OLIVE OIL comes from the third press of the olives. This oil is extracted by heat process from the residue of the olives. It does not have any olive oil taste or aroma as it is blended with a bit of virgin olive oil to have the flavor and aroma of olive oil. Pomace olive oil has a neutral flavor so it can be used even for frying and for Asian or American dishes. It has the same fat composition as regular olive oil and the same health benefits.
The International Olive Oil Council or IOC, is a regulatory board that controls the production of olive oil. The board is based in Madrid and has 23 member nations. IOC promotes olive oil by tracking production, defining and controlling quality standards, and checking authenticity. It is very much like the European regulatory boards for of wine and cheese. Thus, in buying olive oil, it is best that you choose those brands that are produced by IOC member countries.