ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Wegmans Food Markets is standing behind the authenticity of its regional Wegmans Extra Virgin olive oils with seals certifying the products were grown, pressed and packed in their designated Italian or Greek region, said Senior Vice President of Consumer Affairs Mary Ellen Burris in her latest column.
Wegmans-brand oils now carry a round seal indicating a rigorous quality process has been certified by the D.O.P, Denominazione di Origine Protetta (Protected Designation of Origin) or Protected Geographical Indication, depending on region. A unique number is also printed on the neckband of each bottle.
Previously, Wegmans required written assurance that its Product of Italy private-label oils were from Italy and were Extra Virgin, but adopted more stringent standards in response to reports of olive oil fraud and a study finding that almost 70% of imported oils and 10% of domestic oils bought in supermarkets didn't meet the standards for extra virgin olive oil.
“With the growth in culinary popularity of olive oil, there’s been an astounding amount of deception, especially in Europe,” said Burris.