Tunisian table olive phenolic compounds and their antioxidant capacity

J Food Sci. 2008 May;73(4):C235-40. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3841.2008.00711.x.


For the 1st time, 4 olive cultivars, the Meski, Chemlali, Besbessi, and Tounsi, from the Tunisian market were investigated to evaluate the phenolic compounds' contribution in nutritional value of table olives. From the Meski cultivar, we have chosen 4 different samples to evaluate differences within the same cultivar. Basic characteristics and total phenolic content were evaluated in flesh and kernel. The highest value of flesh phenolic content was observed in sample M4 of the Meski cultivar; however, the lowest value was observed in the Besbessi cultivar and they were 1801 and 339 mg GA/100 g dry weight, respectively. The main simple phenolic compounds identified in flesh extracts are hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol, and vanillic acid. Oleuropein was not detected in any samples. The antioxidant activity of Tunisian olive flesh varies between 212 and 462 muM TEAC/g of dry weight. Antioxidant activity of olives was related to their phenolic content but we found a low correlation between phenolic content and TEAC.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / analysis*
  • Chromans
  • Diet
  • Fruit / chemistry*
  • Nutritive Value
  • Olea / chemistry*
  • Phenols / analysis*
  • Phenylethyl Alcohol / analogs & derivatives
  • Phenylethyl Alcohol / analysis
  • Species Specificity
  • Tunisia
  • Vanillic Acid / analysis


  • Antioxidants
  • Chromans
  • Phenols
  • 3,4-dihydroxyphenylethanol
  • 4-hydroxyphenylethanol
  • Vanillic Acid
  • Phenylethyl Alcohol
  • 6-hydroxy-2,5,7,8-tetramethylchroman-2-carboxylic acid