Ultra Premium Extra Virgin Olive Oil
 

6.0 Chemistry Requirements

Objective, verifiable chemical standards form the foundation of the UP grade. Chemical analysis of EVOO has proven to be a fundamental indicator of sensory quality, predictor of perishability, and authenticity of olive oils. UP is the highest quality standard in the world because it utilizes the broadest array of available tests and enforces the strictest limits on all chemical standards.

Chemical Parameters

Determination

Indicators

Extra Virgin Standard

UP Standard

6.1 Free Fatty Acids (FFA) Free Fatty Acids are formed due to breakdown of the triacylglycerols in oils during extraction. Fatty acids are "free" when the are no longer bound to any other molecules. An elevated level of FFA can indicate poor quality or mishandled fruit, too much time between harvesting and extraction, poor storage and/or high temperature during extraction.

Units: % as oleic acid
IOC limit ≤ 0.8

Units: % as oleic acid
UP limit ≤ 0.3
6.2 Oleic Acid The major fatty acid in olive oil triacylglycerols is Oleic acid making up 55 to 85% of olive oil The higher the oleic acid monounsaturated fat content translates to increased durability and shelf-life.

Units: % as oleic acid
IOC limit ≥55

Units: % as oleic acid
UP limit ≥ 65
6.3 Peroxide Value Peroxides are primary oxidation products that are formed when oils are exposed to oxygen causing defective flavors and odors Primary measurement of rancidity in oil. Higher peroxide levels indicate oxidized and/or poor quality oil & give an idea of the freshness & storage conditions.

Units: mEQ O2/kg oil
IOC limit≤20

Units: mEQ O2/kg oil
UP limit ≤9
6.4 UV Absorption UV spectrophotometric determination Secondary measurement of rancidity in oil. Elevated levels of UV absorption indicate oxidized and/or poor quality oil, possible refining and/or adulteration with refined oil. Secondary measurement of rancidity in oil. Elevated levels of UV absorption indicate oxidized and/or poor quality oil, possible refining and/or adulteration with refined oil.

Units: K1%/1cm
IOC limits
K232 ≤2.5, K270≤0.22, DeltaK≤0.01

Units: K1%/1cm
UP limits
K232 ≤2.0
K270 ≤0.20,
DeltaK ≤0.01

(immediately after production)
6.5 Phenolic Content Phenols are healthful anti-oxidant substances in olive oil which aid in slowing down the natural oxidative processes. Phenolic content decreases over time and is an indicator of freshness, with higher amounts improving shelf-life and oxidative stability. N/A Units: (as ppm caffeic acid)
UP minimum
limit ≥ 130
6.6 DAGs Fresh olive oil has a much higher proportion of 1,2-diacylglycerols to Total diacylglycerols while olive oil extracted from poor quality fruits and refined oils have a higher level of 1,3-diacylglycerols The ratio of 1,2-diacylglycerols to the Total diacylglycerols are a useful indicator of fruit quality and acts as a snapshot of olive oil freshness. Low values can also indicate oxidized oil & sensory defects. Units: %Total 1,2-diacylglycerols
AOA limit≥35
Units: %Total 1,2-diacylglycerols
UP limit ≥*90
(*within 30 days of crush date)
6.7 PPP Upon thermal degradation of olive oil, chlorophyll pigments break down to pheophytins and then to pyropheophytins The ratio of pyropheophytins to the total pheophytins is useful for distinguishing fresh olive oil from soft column refined, deodorized, or backblended oils. Units: %Total Pheophytins
AOA limit≤17
Units: %Total Pheophytins
UP limit ≤5
(immediately after production)

*IOC= International Olive Council, AOA= Australian Olive Association