The first activity performed on the olives during the process to produce extra virgin olive oil is the deramifoliation process. Leaf remover and washing machines are very important elements that help you to produce a good extra-virgin olive oil. Leaf removers take o leaves and dirty residues and washing machines clean the olives before delivering them to the crusher. Washing phase is carried out with a low water consumption and always with clean water.
The crusher is equipped with an hopper receiving the olives and housing a screw driven by an adjustable speed motor for flow adjustment. Diameter of the screens of the crusher 350mm; crusher impeller with groove knives. The impeller can be foreseen with a pre-crusher to roughly crush the olives before being transferred to the blades. The cleaning of the crusher is carried out through a cleaning device positioned outside the screen. The speed of the crusher motor can be controlled through an inverter positioned inside the control cabinet of the equipment. Positioned under the crusher, a dedicated pump with elliptical piston transfers the crushed paste on to the malaxers. All parts in contact are made of stainless steel AISI 304 and food grade material.
The malaxing stage is an essential moment for the extraction of extra virgin olive oil from the olive paste. This stage essentially allows the olive paste to heat up to 25°-27° C to reach the optimum temperature where the natural enzymes present in the paste can be fully activated to allow the aggregation of the fatty molecules into oil droplets of different specific weight from the vegetation water present and the olive pomace.
The malaxing group is composed of three malaxing units, all of them are equipped with an electric valve for paste inlet, as well as of a PSS elliptical piston pump for transfer to the decanter and temperature control. The malaxers are closed and a specific kit is installed for their automatic washing, while a temperature management system provides printing of reports on crusher paste temperature.
The required gramation time is about 15-20 minutes.
The olive paste after malaxation is pumped constantly towards a centrifugal separator with a horizontal axis called decanter. This separates the components present in the olive paste, i.e. oil, vegetation water and pomace (waste), with their different specific weights and consequently separable by centrifugal force. The machine consists of a cylinder (called a drum) with a truncated cone end that rotates at about 3600 rpm and an internal auger (a worm screw propeller to drain the pomace towards the outlet) that rotates in the opposite direction to the drum at a speed of about 10-15 rpm. The conical part of the drum and the respective part of the internal screw improve the separation of solid from liquid, while the cylindrical part allows the separation of oil via a labyrinth system and siphon at the other end.
Machine specifically studied to separate pits from waste. It is composed by a loading hopper for waste equipped with feeding unit driven by gear motor. The wet material comes out and the pits are discharged from the bank of the machine. A special cleaning device maintains free the grate and a screw with piston pump send the waste without pits to the storage tank.
After extraction, the oil is ready to be filtered and stored in stainless steel tanks in an air-conditioned room.
The oil from the mill's customers, instead, can be directly filtered and bottled.