As Business Insider reported earlier this year, prices of canola oil rose by 40% and sunflower seed oil by 55% in just two months, bringing the retail prices to well over R100 per 2l bottle.  This is primarily as a result of the crisis in Ukraine and the price hikes are forecast to continue if the war prevails. It is estimated that sunflower seed and oil production from Ukraine could drop by around 5 million tonnes this year alone.

As Ukraine is unlikely to sustain normal seed planting and match its previous seed oil export levels for some time, maybe this is the time to consider another option.  

A Stellenbosch restaurateur reported that the price of cooking oil had increased by a whopping 143% since February 2021. With prices of cooking oil escalating at an alarming rate, why not look at a a better and healthier option – namely, locally produced Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)? 

SA Olive CEO, Vittoria Jooste says: “While we would not suggest that everyone in this country can afford Extra Virgin Olive Oil for everyday use, it can be a very attractive alternative when considering the wealth of health benefits and when also appreciating that the price of EVOO has not risen by more than 10% in the last year.  It’s a chance to trade up, reap the health benefits, and to also support our local EVOO producers and the jobs they create.”

The price differential between EVOO and other oils is due to the superb quality and abundance of health benefits that EVOO boasts. Known as ‘the healthiest fat’, EVOO is proven to have contributed to the longevity of population groups that have traditionally followed a Mediterranean diet rich in EVOO.  

According to Business Insider, although South Africa produces vegetable oil, it does not make enough to meet local demand, which is growing at 2% annually. It is, therefore, an importer of oil and relies on the Black Sea region for the rest of its oil. 

Jooste adds: “Many consumers believe that olive oil should not be used for cooking, but solid evidence exists in support of the use of olive oil – particularly EVOO – for cooking, baking and even frying. South African restaurateurs should take notice.”

The Romans knew about olive oil’s magical properties, calling it ‘Liquid Gold’. Its powerful antioxidants benefit your heart, brain, joints, skin and more.  Beyond the inherent flavour plusses, here are the top five health benefits of Extra Virgin Olive Oil:

1. Helps Lower Bad Cholesterol

EVOO contains high levels (65 – 85%) of monounsaturated fatty acids which help maintain a healthy cholesterol balance. This is more than most cooking oils, as olive oil is naturally cholesterol free.

2. Reduces the Risk of Heart Disease

A healthy cholesterol balance protects the heart and arteries from plaque build-up.

3. Helps Prevent Cancer

The high levels of polyphenols are a strong antioxidant quality in Extra Virgin Olive Oil, which fight the free radicals in our bodies. Excess free radicals cause oxidative stress and have been linked to many forms of cancer.

4. Protects from Oxidative Damage

The antioxidants also maintain the integrity of the oil by protecting it from oxidation. Extra Virgin Olive Oil is rich in Vitamins A, E, D and K. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant.

5. Helps Prevent or Delay the onset of Diabetes

The monounsaturated fat can benefit non-insulin-dependent diabetics.

Science Direct confirms these findings here

So, why not join the rEVOOlution and enjoy the best health and flavour benefits?

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Always look out for the SA Olive CTC seal on a bottle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO). This is a seal of confidence and it’s the guarantee that the producer is ‘committed to compliance’ in quality olive oil production.  It confirms that the EVOO is 100% locally (South African) produced and is authentic Extra Virgin Olive Oil.