Refining of vegetable oils is used for the removal of gums, waxes, phosphatides and free fatty acid from the oil; to impart uniform color by removal of coloring pigments and to get rid of "unpleasant" smells from the oil by removal of odiferous matter.
If oil is refined the process of refinement can be done in several ways. Choosing the refinement level of your oils is important. We have listed the 3 levels of refinement that can be used for our oils.
This level can be found in the Technical Specifications for each oil/butter available.
Ultra Refined Oils
Ultra Refined oils are thoroughly filtered and strained, usually with additional heat and are often bleached or solvent extracted. Ultra refining often reduces the nutrient level and flavor. It also removes all particles and resins which makes ultra-refined oils very clear or light in color, very stable for long storage, more resistant to smoking, and a good choice for high-heat and long shelf life products.
Naturally Refined Oils
Naturally Refined oils are less thoroughly filtered and strained than Ultra Refined oils and are not processed with any additional heat or harsh and damaging chemicals. Naturally, refining does not reduce the nutrient level or flavor and partially removes particles and resins, which may result in lighter colored oils than Unrefined oils. They will have a shorter shelf life than Ultra Refined oils and are best used at moderate heats or low heat. Some oils would be undesirable for both food and cosmetic applications as unrefined oils and are therefore naturally refined for these applications.
Unrefined Oils
Unrefined oils are filtered only lightly to remove large particles. Some, such as sesame or olive oil, may appear cloudy or have visible sediment after sitting. This does not compromise quality. Unrefined oils are “whole” oils and their flavor, color and fragrance are more pronounced than in refined oils. Like unrefined whole grain flours, unrefined oils are more nutritious and have a shorter shelf life than Ultra Refined oils. Unrefined oils are best used unheated or at low heat. Their natural resins and other beneficial particles burn easily and develop unpleasant flavors and unhealthful properties if overheated.