The Certification Process

There are three related purposes of the COOC certification program.

  • The first is to provide producers and marketers with a standardized method of grading their 100% California olive oil as extra virgin.
  • The second is to provide consumers with assurance that the oil they purchase is in fact extra virgin.
  • The third is to provide producers and marketers who meet the certification standard with a means of distinguishing their products in the marketplace.

Overview of the Certification Process

To gain certification, submit their oil(s) to the COOC Panel of Tasters for sensory evaluationas well as chemical analysis. The chemical analysis determines if the oil contains 0.5 % or less free fatty acids as well as a peroxide value of 20 meq O2/kg or less. An ultra violet absorbency analysis is required for those who produce 100 gallons or more.

Chemical Analysis Requirements

The oil has an acidity level, in terms of oleic free fatty acid, of not more than 0.5 % and a peroxide value of 20 meq O2/kg or less Ultra Violet Absorbency for extra virgin olive oil as follows (required for 100 gallons or more):

  • K 270 less than 0.22
  • K 232 less than 2.50
  • Delta K less than 0.01

The Panel of Tasters

The Panel of Tasters ascertains defects as well as desirable attributes of extra virgin olive oils. The tasters have undertaken a training and certification program. The team meets at least twice each month for the dual purpose of selecting oils for the COOC program as well as for continual training.