What To Ask When Choosing A New Oil Supplier

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

Choosing the right suppliers can have a huge impact on the bottom line for your company. The decisions you make about your vendors can impact your pricing structure, the raw ingredient inventory you hold, cash planning, the overall quality of your product, as well as your company's profitability!  Choices around this topic touch so many parts of your business. So today, we want to help you with the guidelines for a new supplier evaluation. 

These are the questions that, as a buyer, you should be asking yourself as you are evaluating new vendors for bulk ingredient supply.  You may be sourcing oils or you may be sourcing something else; this analysis process should look pretty similar across the board.  Let's dig in!

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How Long Does It Take To Defrost My Olive Oil?

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

It's almost that time of year again where the temperatures drop! Throughout the US, food production facilities and shipping trucks will be colder in the coming months. 

In the wintertime, how you handle your olive oil may have to be very different.  Picture for a moment: it's February, your production is about to start and you pull out your tote of olive oil that arrived last week.  You attach the dispensing pump and nothing happens -- no oil flows, and you can't get anything to come out.  You look inside and see your oil is completely solid, like cold butter. Now what?!

This is an all-too-real situation that happens to lots food manufacturers using bulk olive oil. Any manufacturer that has a cool warehouse in the winter or is located in the northern half of the US can expect to have this happen at some point!  The best thing you can do?  Prepare and know your options.

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Coconut Oil: Types At A Glance

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

Stroll down the oil aisle of any grocery store, and you are bound to find a plethora of different coconut oils. It is one of the most popular oils in today's natural food market. 

A common question that we get from food manufacturers who are choosing coconut oil as an ingredient is, "Which kind of coconut oil should I choose?"

Here's the thing: there are multiple types (or grades) of coconut oil, and they each will taste and function very differently. It is extremely important to choose the right grade of coconut oil to be able to meet both your product's functionality and attributes needs. 

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What Is Pomace Olive Oil?

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

Do you want to know what Pomace Olive Oil is? Today we'll dig into this topic so you can learn more!

What Is Pomace?

The dictionary has a pretty simple and spot-on definition for Pomace. Lets take a look:

"The dry or pulpy residue of material (such as fruit, seeds, or fish) from which a liquid (such as juice or oil) has been pressed or extracted. 2 : something crushed to a pulpy mass."

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Can you Substitute Canola Oil for Vegetable Oil?

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

Can you use substitute canola oil for vegetable oil?  To answer this, we'll have to explain more about what vegetable oil actually is (and no, it's not made from the vegetables you're thinking of).  We'll also explain what makes vegetable oil ideal for your cooking and how canola oil may work differently -- or exactly the same.

But first, see the short answer below!

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The Meaning Of Expeller Pressed Canola Oil

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

Do you ever find yourself wondering what the true meaning of Expeller Pressed Canola is? Or maybe you have just heard the term a lot lately. This is because it is one of the most popular edible oils, as we find the food industry leaning more towards healthy and natural ingredients. 

We will begin by first defining what expeller pressed canola oil is so you can really determine whether it is right for your manufactured food.

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What Oil To Use To Get A Light Flavor And Color

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

If you were used to eating cereal with skim milk for years, you would sure notice if you poured heavy cream on that cereal instead of your routine skim milk. You would find yourself in for quite a rude awakening!

Like every food -- how the milk or cream is produced, what it comes from and any of its further processing all comes together to create unique product traits. These characteristics make each make product taste and feel different from each other even though they all still come from the same raw ingredient. 

Olive oil works in this exact same way. Each different grade is produced differently: one grade is the first press, while others are refined or come from a different part of the olive. How the grade is made produces a unique oil, and you can taste and see the difference between each. 

Just like in our example about the heavy cream that you wouldn't put in your cereal, you will want to choose the right grade of olive oil for exactly what you are making. 

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What is the Difference Between Cold Pressed, Expeller Pressed, & Solvent Expelled?

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

 

It can be extremely hard to know exactly what you're getting when it comes to oil. Oils are produced in many different ways: some might be extracted using solvents like hexane, and others are expeller pressed with a mechanical press that physically squeezes the oil out. 

How oil is produced may not be clearly marked on a retail or bulk label, which makes things even more confusing.  Sometimes descriptors about production methods can be found in the title, other times clues are left in an "abbreviated form", or the details may be found only in the description on a spec sheet. To make matters worse, some vendors make no mention at all on how the oil is made on any QA or Marketing documents, so you may just have to know what's "industry standard".  This puts it in your hands to ask the right questions and get the proper documentation. 

Centra Foods always tries to be as clear as possible. That's why, today, we will explain what the solvent extracting, expeller pressing, and cold pressing methods all look like in detail. When explaining these processes, we will be referring to canola oil specifically because it's one of the oils that is commonly expelled in all three variations. You will notice these processes are going to look very similar for many different type of other seed oils too, so you can apply these general ideas across the board with vegetable oils.

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The Difference Between Extra Virgin Coconut Oil vs. Virgin Coconut Oil

Posted by Alexa Ketterling

In recent years the popularity of coconut oil has sky-rocketed and still continues. However, there is a lot of different variations of coconut oil, so it can be hard sometimes to understand exactly what you are getting. 

When you are walking through aisles at the grocery store and scan the shelves for each brand of coconut oil provided you will notice every jar will have differences in description on the labels. Some brands you have chosen to highlight the fact that the oil inside is unrefined, sometimes that it's a superfood, or even perhaps that it is cold-pressed. Some are organic and, of course, some are not.

There is one rather big difference between the types of coconut oils, and this one you will see over and over again on the labels: whether the oil is "virgin" or not. Unrefined oil is typically called out using the word "virgin", meaning, "the grade of coconut oil that is not refined".

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Essential Factors To Consider Before Selecting Bulk Packaging

Posted by Kevin Hill

Product packaging will play a huge role in the success in sustainable food industry operations. However, it can be extremely tough for manufacturers to choose the right packaging materials according to their business needs, even with huge variety of choices that are offered these days. 

Cost is the primary concern for most purchasing managers, but the packaging material you choose should also be well-suited for protecting products during their transportation, storage and delivery. Visual appeal and branding are also important to consider as well, especially in sectors with extremely high competition. 

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