“Early Harvest” Olive Oil


Genius Loci organic "early harvest" extra virgin olive oil

freshly pressed, pure organic extra virgin olive oil 

The olive oil health benefits are widely known and are believed to include protection from Alzheimer’s, cancer and treatment of painful arthritis.

The exciting recent discovery that olive oil contains a health-promoting polyphenol called oleocanthal challenges the assumption previously held by nutrition experts that olive oil health benefits come mainly from its healthy monounsaturated fat content.  It is now known that the oleocanthal, one of the principle polyphenol compounds in olive oil, provides enormous health benefits.

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However, not all olive oil contains oleocanthal.  The best way to maximize the oleocanthal content of your olive oil is by purchasing one that is from “early harvest” olives.   Green olives picked early in the fall tend to be higher in polyphenols like oleocanthal and in antioxidants.   A recent study confirmed that the earlier the time of harvest, the more oleocanthal the oil contained.

Many people like the peppery quality of early harvest oil which contains flavors of grass and green leaves.  These flavors, along with its bright green color, are due to the naturally occurring polyphenols, including oleocanthal, found in the olives.

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The importance of true extra virgin grade for olive oil health benefits

Extra virgin is the highest grade of olive oil. If you make sure to choose an early harvest olive oil, it will likely automatically be extra virgin. As with all “virgin” olive oils, it is considered the natural juice of the olive fruit. It is made without the use of chemicals or excessive heat.  As an unrefined, natural product that has undergone very little processing, extra virgin olive oil retains its nutritive value and contains the highest levels of polyphenols like oleocanthal.

Other marketed categories – “pure” or “light” oil, “olive oil,” and “pomace olive oil” – have undergone chemical refinement which strips away olive flavors and many of the oil’s health benefits.

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Other criteria for choosing the healthiest olive oil

In addition to making sure your olive oil is “early harvest” and truly extra virgin, some other helpful tips for choosing quality oils include:

  • Oil should be bottled in dark glass or other containers that protect against light.
  • To ensure freshness, look for bottles with a “best by” date.  Purchase oils only from the current year’s harvest.

****the above information is from the Natural Health Advisory

I was shocked to learn recently that commercial supermarket grade olive oils, aside from the often adulterated / mixed oils’ contents, are all “late harvest ” oils –  picked  in the winter from very ripe black olives.  While this ensures the commercial producers a higher yield and greater profit, the oil contains little of its nutritive value and very few polyphenols like oleocanthal. While our Genius Loci “normal” organic extra virgin olive oil is ALL  “early harvest” (mid-to late October),  this new discovery gives us yet another valid reason to produce even more of our “extra-extra early harvest” (early October) Premium.

Our goal has always been to produce the highest possible quality organic extra virgin olive oil from “early harvest” olives.  But if the earlier the harvest the better the health benefits, then our Premium assumes greater importance.  Not only does our  Genius Loci Premium maintain its remarkable fruity, buttery, grassy, peppery taste a couple months longer than our “normal” olive oil, now we know that it also guarantees the most remarkable health benefits as well.

Our Genius Loci “Early Harvest” Extra Virgin Olive Oils – “normal” and Premium  – are reserved exclusively for our loyal Club Members on a first-come-first-serve basis.  To avoid disappointment, either Join the Club (please refer to the Sign-Up Form, remembering to confirm your membership by email, on our website… or place your Member order today!

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****We express very special thanks to our friend / Genius Loci guest Dan Kalschmid for sharing the information on this important recent discovery of the added “early harvest” health benefits!



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