Virgin olive oil, and extra virgin olive oil, (comes from virgin oil produc-tion only, contains no more than 0.8% acidity) is produced by simply crushing olives and extracting the juice in a press or centrifuge. Virgin olive oils contain the highest levels of polyphenols, antioxidants that have been linked with better health. All of the other grades, such as "pure" and "olive oil," are refined using high heat and chemical processing, in the same way other cook-ing oils are.3 million tons of olive oil is produced around the world each year, which equates to about 445ml for each one of us. Are you using your share? There are at least fifty different varieties of olive, each with its own distinct characteristics. In Greece, there are an estimated 120,000,000 olive trees and 350,000 Greek families involved in olive tree cultivation. Extra Virgin olive oil accounts for less than 10% of oil in many producing countries; the percentage is far higher in the Mediterranean countries (Greece: 80%, Italy: 45%, Spain 30%). Olive oil is a staple of the Mediterranean diet and it has a posi-tive health impact on heart, cancer, stress and blood pressure symptoms.