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How to store extra virgin olive oil to preserve its freshness

Olive oil

Extra virgin olive oil, the symbolic food of the Mediterranean diet: here's how to store it correctly and the mistakes to avoid.

Extra virgin olive oil is a type of oil obtained from the first pressing of the olives. Compared to other types of oil it is very acidic and has a slightly fruity taste. It is the highest quality olive oil available and is rich in antioxidants . For this reason it is considered healthier when compared with other oils. However, it is a food that can become delicate, especially if stored incorrectly. Here are the main mistakes not to make.

What is meant by extra virgin olive oil

There are different types of oil that are obtained from the collection and pressing of the olives. Those obtained by mechanical means are three, two of which are edible: virgin and extra virgin. The third, the clear one, once used for lighting, becomes edible only after a long refining process.

Olive oil
Olive oil

But what distinguishes the virgin from the extra virgin? From a production point of view there is no difference between the two. What makes them different is instead the set of chemical and organoleptic characteristics. To become extra, a virgin oil must have a maximum acidity induced by free oleic acid equal to 0.8%. Furthermore, it must be subjected to very strict tests by competent control bodies, which must evaluate the presence of the typical fruity aroma and the bitter and spicy taste .

How to store extra virgin olive oil to keep it fresh

Storing olive oil is important to preserve its freshness. When we buy a decent quality, let's make sure that the seal is not broken and that the oil is stored in a cool and dark place. Each time we use it, then, we pay attention to close the cap tightly, to avoid making it go bad. Under optimal conditions, a good oil can stay fresh for up to six months.

As for the receptacles, the most popular and traditional way is of storage leads to ceramic or glass containers . Metal containers on the other hand should not be used because they can corrode and affect the taste of the oil.

Mistakes to avoid for oil conservation

The first factors that degenerate and affect the quality of our oil are heat and humidity . For this reason it is necessary to keep the bottles and containers in cool and dry places. However, even sudden changes in air or temperature can become enemies of our excellent olive oil. For this reason everyone, from shopkeepers to consumers, is required to never expose the product to the sun's rays, do not store it near heat sources or in places with excessive lack of heat. Even inadvertently leaving the oil near the stove could irreparably compromise its taste. For this reason, great care must be taken during each use.

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