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University of Pisa Patents New Olive Oil-Extraction Method


The University of Pisa has devised a new and patented method of extracting extra-virgin olive oil.


Designed by agricultural scientists at the University of Pisa led by Professor Gianpaolo Andrich, the innovative technique uses dry ice (solid carbon dioxide) to achieve a nine percent average higher yield (17.4kg instead of 16kg of product per ton of olives), which contains six percent more vitamin E and is more resistant to oxidation.


The addition of dry ice before pressing freezes the water inside the olives, leading to a collapse of cellular structure and the creation of a more biologically rich oil, protected from contact with oxygen by a layer of gas.


The new technique is welcome news for olive oil manufacturers, as the increase in yield makes early harvesting economically viable, which in turn limits the damage caused by pests that adversely affect the harvest.  


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