We live in a time when fake food is rampant, and we cannot trust large-scale anything. Olive oil is no exception. If you’ve ever tasted pure, fresh olive oil, you know there’s something not quite right about generic supermarket brands. It's not just a matter of poor quality; accepted industry practices are harmful to our health.
What's exactly is going on? It seems there are two issues at play:
Olive oil is best the moment it’s harvested, and due to slow shipping from overseas, most bottles are long past their primes by the time they reach the shelves near you.
There continues to be widespread, undisclosed blending of pure olive oil with harmful industrial products such as soybean, canola, or other commercial seed oils to keep costs down. This practice was revealed most recently in samples of avocado oil in a UC Davis study.
As the authors of a 2020 olive oil quality study pointed out, it’s very difficult to monitor olive oil for fraud:
“Its unique composition is characterized by high levels of monounsaturated fatty acids and the presence of minor constituents with important biological properties, such as the so-called OO polyphenols. Being a high added value product, OO suffers from extensive fraud and adulteration phenomena. However, its great chemical complexity, variability, and the plethora of parameters affecting OO composition hamper significantly the selection of the absolute criteria defining quality and authenticity, and a reliable and robust methodology is still unavailable.”
In a post on The Planet Keto Blog, we profiled a few examples of small producers that we know and trust with our health. When in doubt, seek olive oil from businesses you can get to know. Ask questions, read websites, and try to meet the person behind the product.
If you’re making an effort to get seed oils out of your diet, you don’t want to be paying a premium and then ingesting them in hidden forms!