How Italian Olive Oil Is Produced

Olive tree Handpicked olive Olive crusher Cold pressed olive oil Olive oils that are judged deficient after the pressing are sent to a refinery for mechanical, chemical or heat processing.



If  the label does not say "Extra Virgin Olive Oil" or "Virgin," the oil has been refined. Refined olive oil is colorless and the taste is lighter. Before this Italian olive oil can be sold as ordinary "Olive Oil, or Pure Olive Oil" some "virgin" oil is blended back in to provide color and taste.

"Light" or "Mild" Olive Oils are also made this way, but less "virgin" oil is added back in.

The Italian "olive oil" grade is excellent for deep-frying because it has a higher smoke point (420F) than extra virgin oils (406F).

Italian olive trees are carefully cultivated, and many will produce great olives for hundred years. The quality of the olives depends on the soil and weather during the growing season. Olive oil producers choose the wording "Imported from Italy" on their labels to create the impression that the olives were grown in Italy. It only means that the oil was bottled in Italy. Only
the PRODOTTO CERTIFICATO stamp on each label, is the guarantee that the olive oil comes from Italian olives.

The ripe olives harvested and taken to the mill as soon as possible after picking.

Giant stone wheels are used to crush the olives into a mash.

The mash is spread onto thin mat that are stacked into a press. As pressure is applied, oil and water seep out. No heat is used - hence the term "first cold pressed."

After pressing, if the oil is judged to be excellent, any water is separated out, and the oil is filtered to remove small bits of fruit or pit. Some Italian olive oils are unfiltered by preference.

Olive oil filter

Certified Product

Colavita guarantees its product to be 100% Italian olive oil and properly labeled.


"Extra" is the highest grade for the best, pure, unrefined and unprocessed oil of the fruit. To be graded as Extra Virgin, the oil must exhibit superior taste, aroma and color. And to meet the most exacting labeling standards, it must also have less than one percent free oleic acid. COLAVITA is proud that its Extra Virgin Olive Oil is the choice of many of the finest chefs, both in restaurant and home kitchens.


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