UC Davis Olive Center Studies Conclude 60 Percent of Extra Virgin Olive Oil Sold to Restaurants Failed the USDA “Extra Virgin” Sensory Standard – Some “Not Fit for Human Consumption”
Corning, Calif. (October 4, 2012) – This harvest season, Lucero Olive Oil is reaching out to consumers to educate them on the ingredients of some olive oil on grocery store shelves. Multiple University of California, Davis Olive Center studies indicate that most extra virgin olive oils sold in U.S. grocery stores do not meet the sensorial and/or chemical requirements to be considered extra virgin grade. In one case the studies conclude that 73 percent of imported oils tested failed the International Olive Council (IOC) sensory analysis and 60 percent of extra virgin olive oil sold to restaurants and foodservice companies failed standards testing and some were even classified as “not fit for human consumption.”
“We take great care and great pride in producing the highest-quality olive oil for our customers in order to provide them with extra virgin olive oil that is full of fresh natural flavor and healthy antioxidants,” said Dewey Lucero, co-owner , Lucero Olive Oil, California’s most highly awarded olive oil producer. “It is important for consumers to understand what they are purchasing and to be sure they’re getting quality product for their dollar.”
A study released in September 2012 “evaluated 21 olive oil samples sold to the restaurant and foodservice sectors based on voluntary standards of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).” Findings indicated that 60 percent of the samples classified as extra virgin failed the sensory standard and some “were so defective that they were classified by sensory panels as ‘not fit for human consumption’ under the USDA standard.” Moreover, the chemical purity portion of the study indicated that multiple samples were “adulterated with inexpensive canola oil.” Lucero Olive Oil was included in a similar study in July 2010 and was one of only six of the 19 brands tested that passed all sensory standards (see attached).
A similar study, conducted in April 2011 examined the five top-selling “extra virgin olive oil” brands in the U. S. to see how they matched up against sensory standards. Results showed 73 percent of the samples tested failed the International Olive Oil Council sensory analysis. According to the study, “testing indicated that the samples failed extra virgin olive oil standards according to one or more of the following: (a) oxidation by exposure to elevated temperatures, light and/or aging; (b) adulteration with cheaper refined olive oil; and (c) poor quality oil made from damaged and overripe olives, processing flaws, and/or improper oil standards.”
“This study is a perfect example of why it is important to buy local,” Lucero continued. “Consumers are being duped by foreign companies, exporting into the U. S., who sell inferior oil falsely labeled as extra virgin olive oil in order to cut costs. Purchasing extra virgin olive oil from a California olive oil company is a great way to ensure you’re getting the real deal and not consuming product that’s potentially harmful to your health.” Dewey also advises consumers to look for the “COOC Seal” on labels, which certifies oils as being 100% California Extra Virgin Olive Oil by the California Olive Oil Council.
Lucero Olive Oil is based out of Corning, California, the olive capital of the state. The Lucero family is third-generation California olive growers from a rural community that has a history of producing the country’s most delicious olives. Lucero Olive Oil has been growing olives and producing award winning products for over 40 years. For more information about Lucero Olive Oil, visit www.lucerooliveoil.com. You can also find Lucero on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lucerooliveoil