One of the most important processes carried out at an oil mill is the classification of olive oil according to its characteristics. A simple error in this classification may lead to serious economic losses for the mill. The introduction of automated analytical systems capable of classifying oils based on their qualities, and allowing a thorough control of their traceability is a major breakthrough for the agricultural sector. Project Recupera2020 is an innovation and development project which has emerged out of collaboration between the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), other research centres and small and medium-sized businesses in Andalusia. Its aim is to boost the agricultural industry through the application of new technology.  Under the supervision of a CSIC inspector, Don José Antonio Cayuela, the firm AINIA is participating in the development of new methods of monitoring and improving the traceability of the food supply chain.  AINIA has developed a new method of classifying oil that is fast, accurate and non-invasive, by applying the technology of optical spectroscopy  (VIS/NIR). This method allows scientists to immediately obtain a complete spectral signature of the principal indicators of quality in olive oil (the total acidity and the peroxide value). These, together with other (minor) indicators, determine the quality of an olive oil.  In addition, AINIA has designed its own system for measuring and new models of calibrating this type of oil. As a result, one can now accurately differentiate between types of olive oil, such as extra virgin, virgin and lampante. Furthermore, this can be done during routine controls and at the mill.  The application of this new method is also very useful to laboratories which operate in the different phases of the value chain in the industry, from the oil mill to quality control at the final distribution stage. 

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