Sales of British cold pressed rapeseed oil are set to soar as health conscious consumers look for a lower fat alternative to olive oil.
In a recent independent survey of over 1100 UK consumers, 58 per cent of respondents said they would consider switching from olive to rapeseed oil when it was explained that it is less than half the saturated fat of olive oil and is produced in Britain.
A further six per cent said that the higher burn point of the product (the stage when a cooking fat begins to smoke or burn) would be enough to encourage them to choose rapeseed oil over olive oil during their next supermarket shop.
Ben Guy, managing director of Borderfields, the company that commissioned the independent survey and the leading producer of rapeseed oil in the UK, said:
“The Mediterranean diet has traditionally been seen as healthier than the British diet due to its reliance on olive oil. That could all be about to change as British consumers are becoming more educated on the health, economic and environmental benefits of rapeseed oil.”
“Not only is cold pressed rapeseed oil half the saturated fat of olive oil, but it also contains omegas 3, 6 and 9; essential fatty acids known to reduce cholesterol and maintain a healthy heart, brain function and joint mobility. It is also completely natural – free from additives and processing.”
Consumers all over the UK are voting with their shopping baskets. Volume demand for bottles of rapeseed oil has grown by 11.5 per cent across all sellers in the last year, according to retail analysts Kantar, while sales of extra virgin olive oil have fallen by 0.9%.
Tesco, which stocks Borderfields, has seen sales of rapeseed oil increase by 60 per cent in the last year alone.
Such is the demand that Borderfields is now successfully selling its cold pressed rapeseed oil infused with a variety of flavours plus a range of seasonal salad dressings.
Ben Guy added: “We are starting to see a real tipping point in demand. It’s not difficult to appreciate the benefits of rapeseed over olive oil. It scores top marks for being healthy, local, environmentally friendly and tasty. I think that message is starting to get through to consumers.”
There is a growing interest from celebrity chefs around the country who like its versatile nature. Michelin Star Chef Kenny Atkinson said: “Rapeseed oil can be used as a healthy butter and margarine replacement for baking as well as for dressings and dipping. It makes the best roast potatoes and excellent mayonnaise. I wouldn’t be without it in my kitchen.”