A new regulation from the UK R.P.A (Rural Payments Agency) prohibits selling Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Olive Pomace Oil on tap in the UK from 13 December 2014.
Have you ever seen olive oil being sold like this? You just refill a bottle from a stainless steel container sometimes with unmarked oils i.e you have no idea what you are getting!
I have seen it three times in the UK since I moved here. The first time, I was really surprised because I’d never seen it before anywhere; we don’t sell it like this in Spain. Also, the shop staff couldn’t give me much information about the oil inside, even though the price was similar to buying a bottle of premium oil!.(the shop closed some time ago). The second time was on a gorgeous English summer’s day at a delicatessen. I am sorry to say that the dispenser was next to the window, getting all the heat from the sun. Even though we don’t have many days like this in the UK, it should have been kept in the shade. By doing this means all the benefits and quality of the Extra Virgin Olive Oil are preserved.
With this new regulation, it seems that we will have to rely less on the knowledge of the shop staff as this way of selling disappears. We can just expect that the producers and bottlers comply with the new requirements and then read the label carefully if we want to know more about what we are eating (it is the same with all the products that we consume). We will talk about the information on the label in another blog in future.
In any case it is not time to think if we like the change or not – it is time to watch and see how the industry faces and adapts to this new regulation about Olive Oil.