Why Freshness Matters

Why freshness mattersWhy every bottle of Mother’s Garden Extra Virgin Olive Oil has the pressing and bottling dates on it.

Fresh food is the best, isn’t it? Knowing something is as fresh as possible is as important as knowing where it comes from and that it has been produced with the utmost care.
We hand write the vital pressing and bottling dates on to every label – and we put this at the top of our 500ml glass bottles.

Best Before – just one year from bottling?

Absolutely. We put a best before date of one year from bottling to ensure the finest quality and benefits.
Olive oil can be kept for two or three years. Some olive oils on sale in the UK can be this old and there is nothing on the container to tell you how old. The flavour and goodness diminishes as an olive oil ages, and this dulling of its vitality is accelerated by light and warmth. The shorter the time in a bottle (never clear glass) and on a shelf in a store the better.
A great many people tell us that they didn’t realise extra virgin olive oil had a scent and a flavour, with a peppery finish. That is because they have been used to cheaper, stale oil, thinking that because it says Extra Virgin the quality is guaranteed. It isn’t.
Our aim is to reduce the time it takes to get our fresh olive oil from the mill where it is carefully stored, to our customers, to do all we can to give our customers the vital Mediterranean-diet fresh goodness of simple olive juice/oil as we enjoy here every day.

Always be sure of three things.

There are scores of wonderful olive oils in the world, made from different varieties and produced by dedicated growers, be they independent or a village cooperative. Explore the host of flavours, talk to your local deli, but be sure of three things
- the age of the olive oil,
- the provenance,
- and the care taken to produce it.
Is it clear when it was pressed, who produced it and where it was bottled?
Unfortunately there is a lot of olive oil on sale that is not fresh and is not 100 per cent extra virgin.
If you want to learn more, read books by experts such as Judy Ridgway, Anne Dolamore and Tom Muller.

Key facts about our award-winning olive oil.

- The arbequina olives are harvested here in the Priorat mountains of Catalonia in November.
- They are picked and cold pressed on the same day, in our village cooperative mill. Speed is vital for quality.
- We store the oil in the same room as where it was pressed, until we are preparing a shipment. We bottle at the mill too.
- It is 100 per cent, unblended arbequina extra virgin olive oil, pure and simple.
- We work with 40 other families, some of who only have a few trees, others who have hundreds. We have 110 trees.
- The oil has an exceptionally low acidity of 0.1 per cent and is rich in antioxidants and nutrients. You can find out more about the multiple health benefits of quality, fresh olive oil here.
- At home keep your olive oil  in a cool place out of direct sunlight, and decant what you need into a glass pourer. Our pourer lives in the middle of our table with the seasoning, because it is a daily food, not a luxury.