5K reads
5163

News Briefs

Israeli Firm Prepares to Launch Countertop Olive Oil Appliance

The countertop appliance that transforms olives into olive oil in less than an hour could be available in 2024.
According to its creators, Olive X-Press will be available for sale in various retailers in 2024.
By Daniel Dawson
Sep. 6, 2023 14:25 UTC

After over a decade of devel­op­ment, a team of Israeli entre­pre­neurs say they are prepar­ing to launch a coun­ter­top olive oil pro­duc­tion appli­ance: the Olive X‑Press.

Like the Spanish Olimaker, launched in 2020, the device would allow con­sumers to trans­form 3 kilo­grams of freshly har­vested or spe­cially treated and vac­uum-pack­aged olives into olive oil at home in 45 min­utes.

This is the small­est olive press­ing machine in the world,” Nir Padan, the chief exec­u­tive of Olive X‑Press, told Olive Oil Times. This was a very chal­leng­ing project. It is not easy to cre­ate such a machine.”

Padan said the biggest hur­dle to over­come was com­bin­ing the three main steps of olive oil pro­duc­tion – grind­ing, malax­ing and decant­ing – into a coun­ter­top appli­ance the size of a cof­fee machine.”

See Also:Olive Oil Producer Raises €500K Through Crypto Bonds

To pen­e­trate the home kitchen, you want to have only one engine. You want to have a very silent machine, small and easy to wash,” he said, adding that they must also be easy to assem­ble and dis­as­sem­ble. This is totally dif­fer­ent type of ven­ture.”

In a patent sub­mit­ted to author­i­ties in the United States, the inven­tors said they ulti­mately decided to use pres­sure instead of fric­tion, the method employed in ham­mer­mills, to extract the oil. The for­mer method trans­forms the olives at lower tem­per­a­tures and more qui­etly.

The present inven­tion is aimed at pro­vid­ing a low speed, low torque process for break­ing the olive stone,” the inven­tors wrote in the patent. The low-speed process pre­vents over­heat­ing dur­ing olive pro­cess­ing.”

Additionally, low torque and speed result in a small, light and low energy con­sump­tion motor, which is suit­able for a home appli­ance,” they added. Low speed also reduces noises and enables shar­ing the same rota­tional speed of dif­fer­ent phases in the process.”

The Olive X‑Press resem­bles a cross between an ordi­nary food proces­sor and a cof­fee machine. While the final design has not been com­pleted, Padan indi­cated that an outer cover would house the device and its exter­nal motor.

After we pro­vide the work­ing mech­a­nism in wide­spread tests, we will go into detail about the outer shape and design, which will make the prod­uct a very nice-look­ing machine for retail,” Padan said.

The device is a frus­tum, a con­i­cal cylin­der with a smaller top diam­e­ter and larger base diam­e­ter. Olives are placed on a plat­form on the device and intro­duced to the crusher.

Once the pit is crushed, the result­ing olive paste fil­ters down to a malax­a­tion bowl at the bot­tom of the frus­tum, where the paste is kneaded for 30 to 40 min­utes to increase the size of the oil droplets.

Afterward, the malaxed paste is pressed to sep­a­rate the solids from the liq­uids – water and olive oil. The liq­uid then passes through a ver­ti­cal fil­ter, and the olive oil is fur­ther sep­a­rated from the water by den­sity.

Padan said the pro­to­type would undergo rig­or­ous test­ing and should be ready for a lim­ited mar­ket intro­duc­tion before the 2024 olive har­vest. He expects to sell the appli­ance for about $250 (€233).

Before the next har­vest sea­son in the north­ern hemi­sphere, we will sell house­hold coun­ter­tops in the world using deal­ers,” he said. We will start with the peo­ple who grow olives, who live near olive trees.”

Along with sell­ing the appli­ance, Padan said the com­pany would make most of its rev­enue from sell­ing the vac­uum-pack­aged olives to trans­form in the appli­ance, com­par­ing the approach to those of Nespresso pods.

Advertisement
Advertisement

This means that we had to develop an extended shelf life for fresh olives,” he said. The prob­lem we had to solve. Previously, the only way today to press a high-qual­ity oil is on the day of the har­vest.”

To solve this, we are giv­ing the olives a nat­ural treat­ment, which is non­chem­i­cal,” Padan added, After this treat­ment, we are clos­ing the olives in a vac­uum pack­age. Also, we store the pack­aged olives in the fridge. The pack­aged olives can be used for more than one year in order to press a fresh olive oil.”

Padan said the treat­ment included antiox­i­dants but declined to go into specifics, cit­ing the need to remain com­pet­i­tive.

The com­pany plans to license the tech­nol­ogy, X‑Tend, to allow olive grow­ers world­wide to pre­pare olives for the machine using the process that could be sold to con­sumers.

Padan said this would also cre­ate a wide vari­ety of options, from mild Arbequinas and pun­gent Coratinas to far less com­mon vari­eties usu­ally con­fined to small geo­gra­phies.

briefs-business-israeli-firm-prepares-to-launch-countertop-olive-oil-appliance-olive-oil-times

Olive X‑Press packages olives using their patented technology for use in the appliance.

Padan insists that the olive oil cre­ated by the Olive X‑Press tastes just as good as freshly milled extra vir­gin olive oil. His claim has been sup­ported by Zohar Kerem, a pro­fes­sor of food chem­istry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, who con­sulted on the project.

Kerem and his team ana­lyzed the olive oil pro­duced by the Olive X‑Press using stan­dard phys­io­chem­i­cal and organolep­tic tests to deter­mine the olive oil grade and qual­ity.

Describing the results of his study in a let­ter to Padan, which was seen by Olive Oil Times, Kerem said the lev­els of health-pro­mot­ing com­pounds, includ­ing polyphe­nols, in olive oil pro­duced by the Olive X‑Press were sim­i­lar to fresh extra vir­gin olive oils.

The researchers also found the olive oil pro­duced by the Olive X‑Press has a shelf-life sim­i­lar to con­ven­tion­ally pro­duced olive oil.

An oil pro­duced from fruits treated and stored as above is equal in com­po­si­tion to oil pressed today by com­mer­cial mills,” Kerem wrote. The Olive X‑Tend novel tech­nol­ogy has actu­ally extended the har­vest sea­son and fresh olive oil avail­abil­ity from three months to year-round.”

Ahead of the ini­tial release of the Olive X‑Press for retail, Padan is busy trav­el­ing, look­ing for cus­tomers and fundrais­ing. He said the com­pany had already raised $3.5 mil­lion (€3.26 mil­lion) for the project and plans to con­tinue these efforts, includ­ing a September visit to New York City to meet investors.

When Olive Oil Times first con­tacted Padan to dis­cuss the device, he answered the phone from a busy restau­rant in Tokyo after sign­ing a mem­o­ran­dum of under­stand­ing with his first client.

They will be the first to pur­chase our coun­ter­top and go to mar­ket with the machine,” Padan said.

He believes that Japan is an ideal mar­ket to launch the device. According to the International Olive Council, Japan con­sumed 57,000 tons of olive oil in the 2021/22 crop year. Separate data from the Spanish Institute of Foreign Trade found per capita con­sump­tion remains at 0.4 liters per annum.

However, Padan is bet­ting on Olive X‑Press to deliver the high-qual­ity prod­ucts that Japanese con­sumers seek.

I can see it clearly now a few times after vis­it­ing,” he said. The Japanese con­sumer really appre­ci­ates high-qual­ity and fresh food, and they are will­ing to pay.”


Advertisement
Advertisement

Related Articles