Is cooking oil quality important?

Is cooking oil quality important?

The world's increasing demand for fried food is not going to dwindle anytime soon. Due to this there is a large increase in manufacturers, restaurants and cafes considering fried options to sell.

Whether those options are ice cream and chocolate bars or seafood and potato chips, there simply is no limit to what can be tossed into a deep fryer and served up to the general public today.

There are issues associated with this trend however. One such issue is the education behind frying and ensuring the products created are of the highest standard in order to prioritise food safety at all times. With this in mind, it is important to understand cooking oil quality and what devices are available on the market to measure it.

Cooking oil quality – what causes it?

Cooking oil, like any product, ages as a result of various factors. Factors that are specific to deep frying may include what food was fried, the heat at which the oil was heated and the amount of times it was used. This is referred to as thermal oxidative modification.

The quality of cooking oil can also decrease due to the time spent at room temperature as this causes oxidation between the air and the oil.

Because cooking oil is such an important tool in many industries, scientists had to figure out a way to measure oil quality. Research revealed that an excellent way to see how used or old cooking oil is was to test the total polar materials (TPM). This essentially showed that a high level of polar components illustrate that the cooking oil is of low quality and has been used too frequently.

Danger of using old, used cooking oil

There are numerous risks associated with companies using cooking oil that is well past its best. As the oil begins to get older, the fried food becomes darker and could feature  spotty surfaces. In addition to this, the fried shell is less crisp and the food absorbs much more oil than usual. This can leave a bitter, unpleasant taste and isn’t particularly healthy either.

Another stage of degradation can lead to products produced being hard, oily and the food inside might not even cook properly. This can then  cause problems from a food health and safety standpoint. It can also produce a burnt flavour and give off a pungent smell.

Basically, the more times that cooking oil is used, the higher the degradation of the end product in quality and safety is.

The testo 270

In recent years technology has significantly improved in the world of cooking oil quality. There is no longer a need for complex column chromatography or laborious lab tests.

Now industries have access to electronic, hand held instruments for daily use in any environment. Known as the Testo 270 Cooking Oil Tester, this compat device tests the TPM through a sensor that can be placed in hot oil.

All that is required is for you to lower the probe into the oil and within 20 seconds you’ll get a reading as to how much the oil is used up and overall quality. The sensor is breakage-proof and can easily be wiped clean and used again in seconds. This is perfect for any businesses that are operating multiple deep fryers.

The Testo 270 features both an audible and optical alarm to alert users that a predetermined figure has been exceeded. This ensures standards are maintained across all fryers.

Users also benefit from Topsafe- a transparent plastic cover that protects the device from impact and dirt whilst guaranteeing optimum hygiene conditions.

For more information about the Testo 270 Cooking Oil Tester, get in contact with our expert NZ team today!