05 Feb

China: Warning issued over ‘bargain’ olive oil

By Angela Xu,

CITY consumers have been warned to be wary of incorrectly labelled olive oil from small stalls in wholesale markets.

Olive oil is popular during the Spring Festival, which has prompted the caution from cereal and oil experts. The oil to avoid is made from olive pomace, or pulp.

According to English labels, the oil is produced in Italy with a price of about 45 yuan (US$5.62) per liter. Pomace is not mentioned in the Chinese introduction.

The low-grade product is selling well because it is half the price of oil sold in supermarkets. Quality is another matter, said an officer with the Shanghai Cereals and Oils Management Association.

“There is little supervision from the local market watchdog because we don’t have advanced trade standards in olive oil, which comes from foreign countries to China,” said Zhao Zhiwei, general secretary of the association. Complaints have been received about bad taste and residue in the pomace oil.

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