Food Fraud

Denmark finds counterfeit olive oil sold in country

By Joseph James Whitworth

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Olive oil Adulteration Counterfeit Denmark Greece Food fraud

Picture: Fødevarestyrelsen
Picture: Fødevarestyrelsen
Denmark has discovered adulterated olive oil from an operation that was first uncovered by Greek police last year.

Acting on a consumer's advice, Fødevarestyrelsen (Danish Veterinary and Food Administration) found that fake oil from Greek company Karpos was sold the country.

The DVFA’s Food Inspection Flying Squad received a notification from police in April after the consumer contacted authorities.

Consumer tip and agency follow up

Karpos Kalamatis - Olives Extra virgin olive oil 5 liters from Greece was bought in a supermarket in Odense Bazar (Denmark) in early April this year.

The consumer believed it was sunflower oil with a green colour to simulate the appearance of more expensive extra virgin olive oil.

DVFA followed this up with the company but it had no stock left and had changed owners.

The agency later found 12 metal canisters in a shop in Brabrand. This business had bought 60 canisters and had 12 left. It received a fine of 10,000 Danish krone (€1,340).

Testing did not find the presence of dangerous colours but authorities said a lack of traceability hindered the investigation into where and how many containers may be in the country.

Investigation in Greece

Greek police found the gang added a dye​ to make yellow sunflower seed oil simulate the green colour and appearance of olive oil and seven people were arrested.

They seized almost 3,000 metal containers of 5 litres in the region of Larissa.

Hellenic Police said the organisation had been active since at least 2015 and adulterated oil was sold under different trade names in domestic and European markets.

Information at the time showed Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands could be affected.

DVFA advised consumers not to use the oil which has date 14/01/2019 and contact the agency if they have the oil at home or have information on the matter.

The agency added it is not easy to tell if the oil is fake but price and an a different flavour are factors to consider.

Related topics Business Healthy foods Fats & oils

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