Is Your Italian Olive Oil the Real Deal?

A smartphone app that tells you whether that olive oil (or balsamic vinegar or buffalo mozzarella) is really from Italy? Yes, it exists.

464433694

464433694

Photo by: dulezidar

dulezidar

That bottle of good olive oil you just bought may claim on its label to have been made in Italy, but, since fraud is an issue, how can you know for sure that it’s the real deal? A new smartphone app aims to clear up any such murkiness.

The free non-profit-created app, Reliabitaly, allows users in Italy and around the world to verify the provenance of Italian provisions like olive oil, as well as such similarly protected products as buffalo mozzarella, Parmesan cheese, Prosecco, and Modena balsamic vinegar. Consumers can use the smartphone app to scan a product’s bar code and learn whether it was truly made in Italy as well as details about how it was made. (This video shows it in action.)

“The aim is to protect and preserve the global prestige of ‘Made in Italy’ products,” the app’s creators told English-language Italian news site The Local.

Some 221 high-end Italian-made products — not all of them food — are protected under EU’s Protected Designation of Origin status. They must meet a strict set of guidelines and hail from a specific region, but regulating the items can be challenging, and, despite efforts, fraud happens.

The app’s product database is reportedly still a work in progress, but it looks like a nifty, high-tech tool for consumers to use to make sure the fancy Italian olive oil they’re about to splash out is not a slick substitute.

Photo: iStock

Keep Reading

Next Up

Olive Oil 101

You’ve probably heard that olive oil is good for you, but do you know why? And since oils are source of fat, can they be part of a healthy diet? Here’s the skinny on this fabulous oil and tips on how to enjoy it even if you’re watching your weight.

The Health Benefits of Olive Oil

This indispensable ingredient adds more than just flavor to your favorite meals.

Olive Oil 101: Everything You Need to Know

Learn the best ways to shop for, store and coo

From the Competition to Your Kitchen: Olive Oil-Poached Shrimp

Inspired by a technique they saw on the Food Network Star premiere, the chefs in Food Network Kitchen created a poached shrimp recipe for you to make at home.

Reading List: Controversy Over Olive Oil, Cloned Food + Adult Picky Eaters

In this week’s nutrition news: Meatless Monday makeover, study shows label readers eat healthier and Europe faces cloned food controversy

The Chef's Take: One Girl Cookies' Raspberry, Flax and Olive Oil Muffins

Make these healthy and delicious Raspberry, Flax and Olive Oil Muffins from One Girl Cookies. More recipes like these at Food Network.

Spicy Pasta with Garlic and Olive Oil: The Anti-Valentine's Day Dinner

If, for whatever reason, you're not embracing all things red and pink these days — and instead running away from them — this Valentine's Day dinner is for you.