Your olive oil - the facts

By Martin Kirby

JUST HOW GOOD IS OUR ARBEQUINA OLIVE OIL? People ask, quite rightly. We define our arbequina olive oil as PREMIUM EXTRA VIRGIN, and this is why. Below you will find the independent laboratory test results for this year’s harvest. But first…. A label that states extra virgin is not, with respect, any guarantee of freshness, provenance or the best possible quality. You may not find anything on the label that tells you where exactly the olive oil has come from, how old it is, if it is a blend of olive oils of various ages, or, indeed, even which country or countries are the original source of the fruit. Please, always look for guarantees that it is from the most recent harvest – is there a pressing date? Look for provenance – does it name the mill where it was pressed? Does it state it is 100 per cent extra virgin? Do you know what olive variety it is? Our olive oil is 100 per cent arbequina variety, but some quality producers may blend different varieties from the same harvest. There are producers and labels – like Mother’s Garden – who do provide all the vital information as well, of course, as some extraordinarily wonderful olive oil. You can source these direct or from independent fine food retailers. Explore. And if you try one or more of these premium olive oils you will discover how special, nutritious and delicious this superfood really can be. CHECKLIST – PRESSING DATE MILL DETAILS 100% UNBLENDED EXTRA VIRGIN SUPERIOR QUALITY TEST RESULTS FOR MOTHER’S GARDEN OLIVE OIL November 2017 pressing Our premium extra virgin olive oil is independently analysed by a certified laboratory, to determine the quality. These are the results for the latest MOTHER’S GARDEN harvest, and how they compare with the quality thresholds required to qualify as “extra virgin”. ACIDITY % = 0.2 (LIMIT FOR EVOO 0.8) This is an essential parameter of quality and, hence, purity and goodness. To qualify as Extra Virgin an oil must have an acidity of less that 0.8 per cent. Our olive oil has one of the lowest acidity levels in the world. Acidity value depends on many factors, such as the quality and the state and maturity of olive fruits and the care and speed of extraction. It is defined as a percentage as grams of free fatty acids (expressed as oleic acid, the main fatty acid present in olive oil) in 100 grams of oil. PEROXIDE VALUE = 4.8 (LIMIT FOR EVOO 20) The Peroxide Value is the measurement of active oxidization in the oil. The very low value indicates that the EVOO is fresh, without oxygen effects, and that, hence, it will retain its goodness longer. Oxidation can be the result of natural aging or indicative of poor handling or heating during the refining process. K232 = 1.77 (LIMIT FOR EVOO 2.5) K270 = 0.11 (LIMIT FOR EVOO 0.22) DELTA K = 0.0 (LIMIT FOR EVOO 0.1) These three readings show UV absorption, give us information on quality and oxidative alteration and show, for example, that an olive oil is not a blend of new and older oils. These are fundamental markers for good quality extra virgin olive oil and help in identifying adulteration/fraud. Remember, too, this olive juice (for that is what olive oil fundamentally is) comes from one village mill, is wholly traceable and fully certified. That is the truth. That is Mother’s Garden. Our premium arbequina juice gives a very smooth, elegant oil with hints of green apple and almond with a peppery finish, with the extraordinary quality of enhancing the flavours of other foods, not overwhelming them. We are here to help. Any questions please ask. And if you feel the urge to learn more, we highly recommend Judy Ridgway and medical practitioner Dr Simon Poole’s award-winning book THE OLIVE OIL DIET. It defines exactly why premium quality olive oil is so important, and there are recipes too. Consider, too, Extra Virginity by Tom Mueller about the sublime and scandalous world of olive oil. There are other excellent guides to olive oil by Judy Ridgway and Anne Dolamore. And would you like to understand more about the Mother's Garden story, our family, this farm and our ethos? Read NO GOING BACK and SHAKING THE TREE.


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