Research about enzyme application in olive oil extraction processing can be effective in obtaining higher yields, faster oil & water separation leading to smoother operation of machinery, less residual oil in the pomace and improved oil clarity.
Pectinase enzymes are used extensively around the world in fruit juice and wine industries and increasingly in the olive oil industry and are produced by submerged or surface fermentation from microorganisms under highly controlled conditions. There are relatively few primary producers (manufacturers) of pectinase enzymes in the world.
In the Australian Olive Industry, there are many types of enzymes but Producers may be unaware there are different qualities on offer through low-activity (or diluted) and high activity (or concentrated) enzymes in the market. Like olive oil… enzymes ain’t enzymes.
Manufacturers vs Suppliers of Enzymes
There are suppliers to industry who do not manufacture enzymes but buy them in concentrates (i.e. a high-activity enzyme), then dilute and formulate a finished product.
Dosage recommendations for these cheaper products often do not correlate to achieving sufficient enzyme activity into the process to give maximum oil yield.
What should you expect to see by using Enzymes in olive oil processing?
During April 2018 at a Processing Workshop in Drysdale Victoria, I noted an interesting response from the Owner of the property, Manzanillo Grove during the processing trial that took place with over 40 producers from all over the country had said “I have never seen Enzymes interact this way before, there is oil everywhere. Another observation is the paste was also performing much more quickly and there is an incredible increase in the amount of extra oil. We are impressed with the results of the processing demonstration today.” Jacques Kint, Manzanillo Grove.
There is a response rate between enzyme dose and oil yield. A low strength enzyme can result in minimal improvement in yield and inferior performance if dosed at the same rate as a high strength product. To give the same performance, low-activity enzymes need to be dosed at much higher rates.
Even though the price may seem competitive on the surface you may actually see yourself paying considerably more in comparison, you can waste your money by using cheap, low-strength enzymes.