Production

FROM OLIVE TO OLIVE OIL

It is not easy to establish the right date to start the harvest valid for all zones, because some cultivars arrive earlier to maturation: generally speaking the best moment is when the drupe start ripening , that is when the skin begins to darken. It is good to keep in mind that the complete maturation of the drupe does not coincide at all with the best quality of the oil to obtain an excellent extra virgin oil the harvest should be done before the biological cycle is completed. Many producers pick the olives late because they are erroneously convinced that the yield increases. The yield increase is only apparent, as with the dehydration of the fruit varies the ratio between the total weight and the extracted oil, but not the overall quantity of oil that can be extracted from fruit. It can be considered a general rule that if healthy olives, well conserved and optimally worked give oil with acidity superior to  0.5 the harvest was late.

PRODUCT PHASES

HARVEST / the harvest is hand-operated using combs to tear off the fruit from the plant and make it fall on the soil on special olive-pick nets. The olives thus picked are brought to the oil-mill to be immediately processed.

WASHING / before begin sent to the milling e olive the olives must be cleaned from the dust., Branches and leaves, then they must be washed in cold water and then passed on vibrating grids in order to eliminate water in excess and divide the olive from the remaining impurities, all this is carried out by the washing-defoliating machine.

PRESSING / the pressing is carried out by means of a hammer olive-press. In this phase it is extremely important to obtain a uniform paste not too coarse or too minute. The presence of stone fragment is of extreme importance because it favours the separation of oil from the watery part.

MIXING / another important aspect is the mixing. It consists in the homogenisation of the paste to obtain a better extraction of the oily part.  The mixing machine is a specific machine that slowly removes and mixes the mass by means of a helical screw favouring thus the aggregation of the minute oil drops. The so obtained paste at this point undergoes a slow remix in the mixing machines, in order and to break the emulsions water-oil formed during the pressing, bringing together the oil-most drops in drops that getting bigger and bigger.

DECANTER AND SEPARATOR / the olives, once crushed and transformed into paste, arrive at the centrifugal separator with horizontal axis, the decanter. These allows to separate between them, the three phases present in the paste, water pomace oil, with different specific weight, by means of the centrifugal force The decanter with two outputs provides for the separation of the three phases making up the dough through only two exits, wet pomace oil and mash. The separation of oil from oily must is effected by means of centrifugal separators with vertical axis, which work on the principle of separation of different substances for different specific weight, in a field of centrifugal forces.