`University Patents New Extraction Method

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University Patents New Extraction Method

Oct. 14, 2014
Olive Oil Times Staff

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The Uni­ver­sity of Pisa has patented a new method for extract­ing extra vir­gin olive oil.

A research group led by Pro­fes­sor Gian­paolo Andrich began their search for a more effec­tive method of extract­ing oil from olives in 2008. In their newly dis­cov­ered method, solid state car­bon diox­ide, com­monly known as dry ice,” is added to the olives before they are pressed. This causes water mol­e­cules inside the fruit to freeze, col­laps­ing the cell walls of the olives.

The research found that this method pro­vides for an aver­age 9 per­cent greater yield of oil com­pared to tra­di­tional meth­ods. Addi­tion­ally, the oil con­tained on aver­age 6 per­cent more vit­a­min E and a greater resis­tance to oxi­da­tion. Because car­bon diox­ide is heaver than air, in its gaseous form it tends to insu­late the pulp as it is machined, pro­tect­ing it from oxi­da­tion.

The olive oil pro­duced using our patent is more closely related to the raw mate­r­ial used, the type of pick­led olives and their area of​pro­duc­tion, and there­fore looks like a typ­i­cal prod­uct char­ac­ter­ized by clear and unmis­tak­able organolep­tic char­ac­ter­is­tics of the most eas­ily rec­og­niz­able and iden­ti­fi­able by the con­sumer,” said Andrich.

The researchers point out that this break­through could yield great advan­tages for the indus­try. It could mean that oils pro­duced from an early har­vest would be more eco­nom­i­cally viable, as the greater polyphe­nol and toco­pherol con­tent would be pre­served by the oxi­da­tion-pro­tect­ing prop­er­ties of the gaseous car­bon diox­ide.


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