Foodservice Cooking Oil Prices And How World Events Can Affect Them

Inflation is a growing global problem. Many factors influence the rising cost of goods and services, from conflict to climate change. Cooking oil is not immune to these fluctuations in price.

What’s Causing Another Spike in Cooking Oil Prices?

Fluctuating oil prices are not new. Supply chain issues from COVID-19, labor shortages, and increased biofuel demands all impacted the prices in the last few years. Now, Russia’s war in Ukraine has sent prices skyrocketing. Ukraine supplies half the world’s sunflower oil, and Russia supplies an additional quarter.

It’s not just sunflower oil, either. The price of vegetable oil peaked in February and rose another 23% the next month. And both soybean oil and palm oil have more than doubled in price in the last few years.

What Does the Future of Fired Foods Look Like?

It’s impossible to predict with certainty what may happen next with the factors that influence oil prices. We can anticipate some things – global conflicts are likely to continue to put pressure on prices, climate change is disrupting growth cycles, and labor shortages come and go. It is more likely than not that the cost of goods will continue to rise unpredictably. For restaurants, that means a successful business strategy means understanding how to navigate and minimize the impact of price fluctuations in critical goods.

Tips to Prolong Oil Life

Use Less Oil

While some restauranteurs may simply reduce or eliminate fried foods on their menu, that’s not an option for all food-oriented businesses. Instead, consider investing in Pitco’s reduced oil volume (ROV) fryers. ROV fryers save on oil costs through several different mechanisms. First, unique technology extends the life of frying oil by swapping fresh oil often. Used oil goes through filtration to remove impurities. The oil filtration process occurs frequently enough to prevent full oxidation of the oil, which extends its life. When the oil is due for a replacement, the system stores old oil in a reclamation tank, these tanks are easy to transport and store and can sell to recycling companies to recoup some part of the oil’s cost. Because the system is automatic, it eliminates the threat of accidental spills and oil loss. No employee must change out the oil manually. Outside of saving on oil costs, it also reduces oil-related injury.

Buy Quality Oil

Oil quality matters. Investing in quality oil will ensure the oil is free from impurities that degrade the oil more quickly and impact the quality of food produced.

Use the Correct Oil

Each oil has a specific smoking point Use an oil that can tolerate the heat of the fryer or other intended use. Using a less expensive oil with a lower smoke point will impact the taste and quality of the food produced and degrade the oil faster.

Protect Oil

Oil degrades more quickly when exposed to direct light, air, and water. Oil also suffers from impurities, like salt or food particles. It is possible to reduce the presence of these impurities by salting food after its removed. When fryers are not in operation, keep them covered. Keep oil supplies in a cool, dark environment in a tightly secured container.

Preparation is Key to Success

It’s impossible to predict what may come tomorrow. Therefore, it’s necessary to plan ahead and mitigate possible adverse changes. Reducing the need for cooking oil and maximizing the effectiveness of the oil purchased are among the best ways to prepare for the likelihood of future price hikes.


Get your plan in place and meet with your local fryer expert for some oil management advice. Click below to get started!

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Topics: Oil