Types of Olives Table olives are classified in one of the following types according to the degree of ripeness of the fresh fruits:

(a) Green olives: Fruits harvested during the ripening period, prior to colouring and when they have reached normal size.

(b) Olives turning colour: Fruits harvested before the stage of complete ripeness is attained, at colour change.

(c) Black olives: Fruits harvested when fully ripe or slightly before full ripeness is reached. 2.2.2 Trade Preparations Olives shall undergo the following trade preparations and/or treatments:


(a) Treated olives: Green olives, olives turning colour or black olives that have undergone alkaline treatment.

(a-1) Treated green olives;

(a-2) Treated olives turning colour;

(a-3) Treated black olives; (a-4) Green ripe olives1 .

(b) Natural olives: Green olives, olives turning colour or black olives placed directly in brine in which they undergo complete or partial fermentation, preserved or not by the addition of acidifying agents:

(b-1) Natural green olives;

(b-2) Natural olives turning colour;

(b-3) Natural black olives.

(c) Dehydrated and/or shrivelled olives: Green olives, olives turning colour or black olives that have undergone or not mild alkaline treatment, preserved in brine or partially dehydrated in dry salt and/or by heating or by any other technological process:

(c-1) Dehydrated and/or shrivelled green olives;

(c-2) Dehydrated and/or shrivelled olives turning colour;

(c-3) Dehydrated and/or shrivelled black olives.

(d) Olives darkened by oxidation: Green olives or olives turning colour preserved in brine, fermented or not, and darkened by oxidation with or without alkaline medium. They shall be a uniform brown to black colour. Olives darkened by oxidation shall be preserved in hermetically sealed containers and subjected to heat sterilisation.

(d-1) Black olives.

(e) Specialities: Olives may be prepared by means distinct from, or additional to, those set forth above. Such specialities retain the name “olive” as long as the fruit used complies with the general definitions laid down in this Standard.


STYLES Olives may be offered in one of the following styles:

(a) Whole olives: Olives, with or without their stem, which have their natural shape and from which the stone (pit) has not been removed.

(b) Cracked olives: Whole olives subjected to a process whereby the flesh is opened without breaking the stone (pit) which remains whole and intact inside the fruit. 1 Olives ranging in colour from yellowish green or other greenish cast which may be mottled. The olives are treated to remove bitterness, sufficiently processed by heat, in hermetically-sealed containers, are not oxidized and not treated with acidifying agents.

(c) Split olives: Whole olives that are split lengthwise by cutting into the skin and part of the flesh.  Stoned (pitted) olives

(a) Stoned (pitted) olives: Olives from which the stone (pit) has been removed and which basically retain their natural shape.

(b) Halved olives: Stoned (pitted) or stuffed olives sliced into two approximately equal parts, perpendicularly to the longitudinal axis of the fruit.

(c) Quartered olives: Stoned (pitted) olives split into four approximately equal parts along and perpendicularly to the major axis of the fruit.

(d) Divided olives: Stoned (pitted) olives cut lengthwise into more than four approximately equal parts.

(e) Sliced olives: Stoned (pitted) or stuffed olives sliced into segments of fairly uniform thickness.

(f) Chopped or minced olives: Small pieces of stoned (pitted) olives of no definite shape and practically devoid (no more than 5 per 100 of such units by weight) of identifiable steminsertion units as well as of slice fragments.

(g) Broken olives: Olives broken while being stoned (pitted) or stuffed. They may contain pieces of the stuffing material.

Stuffed olives: Stoned (pitted) olives stuffed either with one or more suitable products (pimiento, onion, almond, celery, anchovy, olive, orange or lemon peel, hazelnut, capers, etc.) or with edible pastes.

Salad olives: Whole broken or broken-and-stoned (pitted) olives with or without capers, plus stuffing material, where the olives are the most numerous compared with the entire product marketed in this style.

Olives with capers or medley: Whole or stoned (pitted) olives, usually small in size, with capers and with or without stuffing, packed with other edible pickled products such as pieces of onion, carrot, celery, pepper and other suitable ingredients