Most certainly you have found yourself on an aisle at the supermarket ready to buy olive oil, but being confused by all the different types of packaging. Some olive oil is sold in plastic bottles, some in tin cans, and some in glass bottles. But this is not all! There are different glass options as well – transparent glass, green glass or brown glass. Is this all random or is there an explanation to all these packaging methods?
Let’s take them one by one:
• Plastic bottles – the olive oil you will find in plastic bottles is usually refined and cheap. Refined oil, due to its nature has a longer shelf life and does not need that much protection.
• Tin cans – tin containers are an excellent way to keep the olive oil protected from the light, as they have zero transparency. If the can is hermetically sealed, then you do not have a thing to worry about, your olive oil will be preserved in perfect conditions. One disadvantage with the tin cans though – they are usually quite large, and if you do not use olive oil in big quantities, you might risk it expiring before you can finish it.
• Glass bottles – glass containers are great for keeping olive oil, however, the oil quality is affected by light, so transparent glass is not such a good choice. But it is popular, since there are people who like to see the color of the olive oil they are buying. Green glass on the other hand offers a higher level of protection against light, and it also prevents chlorophyll oxidation. Brown glass bottles, the darkest glass there is, offer the most protection and are used by high quality producers.
The packaging of olive oil is not always an indication of its quality, but know this: extra virgin olive oil will never come in a plastic bottle.