Whats does cold pressed olive oil mean?
Cold pressed or first cold pressed is often used in connection with olive oil. Historically, the production of olive oil was made through pressing machines. This mean that olives were placed into circular mats, which were pressed using mechanical pressure to extract the olive oil juice and separate from water. Through this process, a paste of olives is left in the mats. A second pressing of this paste can occur producing additional oil. First cold pressed refers to the olive juice produced during the first stage of this process.
Whilst some mills still use the pressing technique, it is currently relatively rare. Most olive oils are now cold extracted. This means that the olives are crushed in large stainless steel machines in closed circuits to minimise contact with air. The qualification of cold is relative.
Olive oils can not be produced in heated system. However, the temperature used in this process has a significant impact on the quality of the oil. Lower temperatures meaning below 20 degrees tend to produce significantly lower quantities of oil per kg of olives compared to 27 degrees but of higher quality and taste. This is the case for the Oro Bailen olive oils such as arbequina, picual, organic picual, frantoio and hojiblanca or the Frantoio Franci oil such as Franci Bio.