What Is ISO Oil?

by Elena Marcus; Updated September 26, 2017

ISO oils are oils that are extracted, compounded or synthesized according to the published specifications of the International Organization of Standardization (ISO).


The ISO has standards for most existing oils, from food oils and cosmetics to medical and industrial oils. These standards were created over the years by experts in each field, and apply to quality, labeling and methods of presenting products to the public. For example, the ISO provides standards for various viscosity (thickness) levels of motor oil.


Plant oils have a wide variety of compounds in them. The ISO and the United States Department of Agriculture created standards which are being used worldwide. For example they determine what kind of plant extraction can be labeled “cold press oil."


Standardization has the purpose of ensuring uniformity in manufacturing methods and content, and a guarantee of quality. ISO standards facilitate export and import of products, as an ISO logo assures the buyer that the product is made by the book.

About the Author

Elena Marcus has reported on complementary and alternative medicine since 2004. Before that, she reported and commented on social issues and education. Marcus holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from San Francisco State University.

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