Like kneading in bread-making, this is a critical stage in oil production: if you don’t knead the dough properly, the bread won’t rise, and likewise for oil, if malaxation is insufficient, the quality of the oil will be unsatisfactory. A skilled miller knows what is best, in terms of malaxing time and conditions, for each batch of olives he or she processes, and is perfectly aware of the fact that this stage influences both the composition and organoleptic features of the oil.
During this stage, the olive paste is slowly and continuously mixed in order to coalesce the oil droplets into bigger drops so that they can then be separated from the vegetation water by centrifugation. The temperature inside the malaxing unit is kept at about 24 to 26°C. The cultivar and ripeness of the olives are critical factors when deciding for how long the process should last.