Friday, May 7, 2010

Canola or Colza? Depends on Where you Are.

A correction to yesterday's description of the "CANOLA" Fields of Auvers...

My friend Janet (hostess with the most-ess) explains: The beautiful yellow crop fields are actually called: COLZA in France (or what is known in English as Rape Seed).

Here's the difference, she explains: Colza is the French word for Rape Seed and this term is primarily used all over Europe for this crop. (Canada also uses the word Colza)

Once the oil became popular in North America they patented the name of the crop as a combination of the 2 words 'Canada and Colza'. The word 'CANOLA' was patented only in North America. So now, all over North America the crop and the oils made from this crop are legally known as "CANOLA".

Therefore the crop grown in North America is legally named CANOLA, however the crop grown in Europe is called "Colza".

Although it's the same actual plant, if the photo is shot in France the plant is Colza.

Another tidbit about this plant, she adds - Colza is in the Mustard seed family of plants. The Mustard seed plant and the Rape Seed plant look very similar. But the colza fields make a much brighter landscape picture.

I literally learn something new every day in Paris. Here are a few more photos of the brilliant yellow colored COLZA fields of France.

"Colza" Fields in the distance.


"Colza, Colza, Colza in the French Countryside"

Amazingly Beautiful and Brilliant under the sun, no matter what you call it!


  1. Janet gave you something close to the right answer. Colza can, indeed, be called canola. Canola is not just a rebranded name for colza, though. It is actually named for Canadian Oil, Low Acid, not Canadial Colza. The "Low Acid refers to low levels of erucic acid, which has a sharp bitter taste that gives mustard oil its bite. Any colza that has been bred to have low erucic acid can be called canola, regardless of where it is grown.

  2. Thanks so much, my learning never ends!