Things that aren’t good for Extra Virgin Olive Oil are:
- And oxygen
Bright light and exposure to air will deteriorate the quality of your Olive Oil, and oxidation will cause it to go rancid.
On average, a handful of Olive Oils will have a “shelf life” of 12 to 18 months from the time of initial harvest and bottling, but should be consumed much sooner once opened. Ideally, your oils should be consumed as close to the harvest date as possible to enjoy their freshness, flavours, and to take full advantage of all its health benefits.
Our Olive Oil specialist suggest enjoying your Olive Oil within 6 months of purchase.To ensure you are getting the maximum health benefits from your Olive Oil, make sure to do the following:
- Add Olive Oil to foods almost instantly after cooking.
- Purchase and store your oil in airtight non-transparent containers.
- The best storage containers for Olive Oil are usually those that will keep light out and are developed of either dark glass or stainless steel such as fusti.
- Our Olive Oil experts suggest that you always avoid any plastic, and iron or copper containers. Olive Oil will absorb PVCs from the plastic, and will react chemically with iron or copper creating toxic compounds.
- Smaller containers are better than large containers. With small containers for example, you are more likely to consume your oil in a quicker time, preventing prolonged exposure to air with every use.
- If your Olive Oil is in a clear glass container, store it in a dark cupboard away from direct sunlight.
- We also suggest that you store your Olive Oil in a cool place (not near your stove), and ideally between 18 °C to 20 °C ( 64 °F to 68 °F). Crystallization of your oil will occur below 14 °C ( 57 °F) but will disappear again when it’s returned to room temperature, with no harm done to the oil itself.
- At 28 °C ( 82 °F) Olive Oil releases all its aromas and flavours; warming a small spoon or bowl filled with oil in your hands can accomplish this.
Signs Of An “Expired” Olive Oil
As Olive Oil ages, it constantly degrades, the acidity level rises, and polyphenols eventually diminish. The 3 essential indicators for figuring out if an Olive Oil is no longer suitable for consumption are:
- A “wine” smell or taste
- A metallic flavour (noticeable when stored in a reactive metal container such as iron or copper)
- A "musty" smell
- A "flat" taste or a very oily taste, with no noticeable "life" flavour, fruitiness present
- A "greasy" taste
Another sign of a poor state is that the oil has absorbed the odours and flavours of items surrounding it, even if not in direct contact with them.
“Old Wine – New Oil”
A majority wines get better with age, but this is not true for Olive Oil. As olive Oil gets older, it will eventually deteriorate, facilitating the formation of more free oleic acid. Flavour will inevitably weaken, as the acidity level gets higher. Extra Virgin Olive Oil will hold its quality better because it has a low acidity level to begin with, as well as a higher polyphenol count.
We suggest enjoying your oils within 6 months of purchase for optimal flavour and health benefits. Our oils are sourced from both hemispheres to feature young oils more than once a year.