Storage Conditions

In ancient times, olive oil was transported in jars, amphora, and leather bottles. As for storage: Generally, large, glazed jars with narrow mouths and bottoms and a wide middle were preferred, which could hold 100-300 kilos of oil. These large jars were kept in cool, sunless cellars, more than half buried in the ground.

In addition, large or small underground cisterns, plastered with a special alloy, were used to store olive oil in large palaces, mansions, oil houses and even in crowded houses. Glass carboys, bottles, cans or plastic drums and plastic bottles now serve the same function. However, lacquered tins and glass containers are considered to be the most preferred and most suitable of all types of packaging.

Enemies of good oil

Let us emphasize that olive oil does not like four things that can alter its distinctive taste, smell, color and aroma: Light, temperature, air and time.

Light: Bright sunlight makes olive oil taste bitter. Let's imagine that you buy your olive oil from a grocery store or supermarket. First, choose one with a lot of customers where the product is less likely to be on the shelves. Then, especially avoid buying bottles on shelves near windows or close to intense light. Don't forget to check the production date. For edible olive oil, you can go to the markets. Keep in mind that the oil we buy in cans or bottles must also be kept in a closed, out of the light place at home.

Temperature: High temperature is not suitable for olive oil, as is the negative effect of intense light. Light and heat increase the acidity of olive oil, disrupt its structure and invite foreign flavors and odors. For this reason, olive oil must be kept in a cool and dark place at home, provided that it does not exceed the amount needed. Your olive oil must not be close to the stove or radiator. It is recommended to keep it in the cellar or cabinet at about 18°C

But should olive oil be kept in the refrigerator? No, it shouldn't: The oil drips onto the bottle due to condensation on the lid. This can spoil the flavor of the oil and make it bitter. On the other hand, olive oil in the fridge will solidify at 5°-6°C due to the glycerides in its chemical composition, and its clear color will naturally "smoke". Don't worry, your oil retains its unique properties. At room temperature, it will regain its fluidity, become clear and return to its former color and consistency.

You can use the oil from large cans more easily by first transferring it to glass bottles. Especially dark glass bottles will protect your oil better against light. Plastic bottles with lids, which are less likely to break, are convenient and can be thrown away after the oil is used up, are fine for a short period of time. However, plastic containers are not suitable for long-term storage of olive oil. Oil can slightly absorb some of the undesirable properties of plastic.

Air: Olive oil is oxidized when it comes into contact with air. Oxidation also makes the oil sour and spoils its taste. For this reason, keep the mouths of your olive oil bottles tightly closed. In addition, replenish the missing oil so that there is not too much space between the bottle and its cap.

Time: Olive oil, like red wine, is not a product that becomes more beautiful and valuable in the bottle as the years pass in the cellar. The average time for each olive oil to retain its unique color, smell and taste is 1.5 years. In short, although olive oil does not "spoil" as it is kept, it gradually loses its aroma and gradually becomes lighter in color.