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Tags: olive oil | extra virgin olive oil | italy | mafia

60 Minutes: Italian Olive Oils Might Be Fake, Thanks to Mob

60 Minutes: Italian Olive Oils Might Be Fake, Thanks to Mob
 

By    |   Thursday, 31 December 2015 01:24 PM

Most of the extra virgin olive oil imported from Italy is probably fake, thanks to the vice-like grip of organized crime, according to a report to be aired Sunday on "60 Minutes."

The mob's control of Italy's most famous food staple is so powerful, in fact, that even some of its wines and cheeses are likely to be phony, the CBS News program says.

Not only that, but some of the bogus food products could cause serious illness because of the cheap additives in them.

"It is a serious problem because it's not only a commercial fraud," Major Sergio Tirro of the Carabinieri, Italy's state police, tells correspondent Bill Whitaker.

"If you adulterate an extra virgin olive oil with seed oil and those bottles reach consumers who are allergic to seed oil, you are sending them bombs."

Last month, Italian authorities seized 7,000 tons of fake extra virgin olive oil, winning a small battle against the traditional Mafia and other organized criminal groups that run the scam which earns them an estimated $16 billion a year.

The bad news, according to Whitaker, is most of the oil was headed to the United States, an indication that much of it sold in America is also probably fake.

A gallon of extra virgin olive oil, pure from the first press, can cost up to $50. To create an imitation with seed oil or other substances may cost just $7.

Authorities say the enormous profit is more than the mob can make on lucrative drugs like cocaine.

Extra-virgin olive oil is of higher quality than regular olive oil and is the only cooking oil made without the use of chemicals and industrial refining.

The "60 Minutes" report airs Sunday at 7:30 pm/ET.

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GlobalTalk
Most of the extra virgin olive oil imported from Italy is probably fake, thanks to the vice-like grip of organized crime, according to a report to be aired Sunday on "60 Minutes."
olive oil, extra virgin olive oil, italy, mafia
305
2015-24-31
Thursday, 31 December 2015 01:24 PM
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