Knowledge page 5 of 8

The right price for oil

It is unwise to be overly thrifty when choosing what olive oil to buy. Rather than the apparently lower price, one should consider the best quality-price ratio and the flavouring efficiency of the oil. There is a problem however: although it is deeply rooted in our culinary tradition, we are still incapable of discerning good from bad oil.

Luigi Caricato


Olive growing in Italy

At the invitation of the Italian authorities, the 105th session of the Council of Members of the International Olive Council will be held in Rome (Italy) from 23 to 26 May 2017. Olive growing is an important agricultural activity in Italy, generating 3 151 million euros in the olive oil sector, and accounting for 2.4% of the value of agrifood production

International Olive Council


Training courses in the oil sector

Why is it that undergraduate master’s degrees in olive tree cultivation and oil-making techniques have very little success, and never evolve to more advanced degrees? Why is it that no attempt is made to change vocational education and bring a breath of fresh air to a sector now at a standstill? And what about the role of the oil specialist? Where can one acquire blending skills? There are no specific courses for future blenders. And even the schools for professional tasters have great limitations

Mariangela Molinari


The Portuguese Olive Sector

The olive growing area in Portugal is of 352 000 ha, of which 23% is irrigated while the rest is rain-fed. The largest olive tree domains are found in the Alentejo region, which accounts for 50% of the total olive growing area, followed by Tras-os-Montes (22%), Centro (18%); Ribatejo (7.7 %) and Algarve ( 2.3%). Close to 97.5% of the total surface area is used to grow olives for olive oil, while the rest is used for table olives. Six per cent of the olive growing area is used for organic olive farming.

International Olive Council

Does packaging help sales?

In recent years, great efforts have been made to improve the quality of extra virgin olive oil, but what about its appearance? Is design a critical factor? Packaging, a key tool in sensory marketing, strongly influences the choices made by customers standing in front of a supermarket shelf crammed with bottles of similar price and quality

Mariangela Molinari


Is the oil sector changing?

If we persist with our irrational opposition to every type of scientific research, resting on our laurels, the price that we will pay will only get higher. Luckily, after years and years of pity party, hoping in public aids, the producers now are starting to change attitude. We are finally hearing about projects aimed at renovating and increasing production

Domenico Fazio


The Turkish olive oil sector

The value and unique characteristics of olives and olive oil have been acknowledged for centuries and are gaining even more prominence today. Cultivation of this noble fruit is concentrated in specific regions of the world, primarily in the countries bordering the shores of the Mediterranean. Turkey is one of those fortunate countries and is ranked as the world’s second biggest producer

International Olive Council


These are the World's Best 100 Extra Virgin Olive Oils

The results of the Evooleum Awards were unveiled at the World Olive Oil Exhibition. At the event, Juan A. Peñamil, ceo of Mercacei-Edimarket Editores, and José María Penco, project manager of the Spanish Association of Municipalities of Olive - organizers of the contest - presented the Evooleum World's Top 100 Extra Virgin Olive Oils Guide and unveiled the names of 100 brands of Evoo from 16 countries that the jury has considered the best in the world

Olio Officina

Polyphenols in olive oil

An interview with Dennis Fiorini, Professor at the University of Camerino. All there is to know about a quantitative procedure employing high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with diode array detection to determine whether a given oil is entitled to a health claim. An investigation carried out by Massimo Ricciutelli, Shara Marconi, Maria Chiara Boarelli, Giovanni Caprioli, Gianni Sagratini, Roberto Ballini and Dennis Fiorini

Lorenzo Cerretani


The greatest challenges

Special report on the WOOE, with interviews. Madrid is hosting the sixth World Olive Oil Exhibition on March 29th and 30th. What is the latest news from the global olive oil industry? Here is the opinion of Luigi Caricato, executive director of Olio Officina: "Less than 4% of oil for human consumption in made from olives, so it is clear that there is enough space for every oil-producing country. We need to work together to promote its consumption"

Olio Officina


Microwaves and megasounds for olive oil extraction

Recently, the research studies carried out on plants for the olive oil extraction were oriented on the introduction of innovative tools for the olive paste conditioning: microwave and megasonic systems able to condition the olive paste in very short time. Puglia (Italy) and Australia: two different situations, far apparently but linked by the intention to share their knowledge to improve the olive oil sector

Alessandro Leone, Roberto Romaniello, Antonia Tamborrino, Xin-Qinq Xu, Pablo Juliano, Miguel Amarillo, Adriana Gambaro, Antonia Grompone


Olive farming in Tunisia

The recent Olio Officina Festival gave the Italian audience the opportunity of getting a better view of the olive compartment in this North African country. Though endowed with a vast array of varieties that have adapted to its many environmental conditions, Tunisian oil production mostly relies on two cultivars: Chemlali, representing 70% of the olives employed, and Chetoui

Mariangela Molinari

Table olives

The Probiolives Project. Research on table olives has shown that the consumption of this product can strengthen consumers’ natural immune systems

International Olive Council


Trends in global consumption of table olives

The global consumption of table olives in recent years has multiplied by 2.7, increasing by 182.0% over the period 1990/91–2016/17

International Olive Council


Young tasters

While it is sometimes difficult to teach adults to discern the aromas of olive oil, children are more spontaneous and free of prejudice. It is easier to discern scents and aromas if we have fewer “perturbing factors”. Teaching is easier when the students have no previous knowledge or preconceptions

Lorenzo Cerretani


The winners of the 2017 Forme dell’olio contest

After four years, our international packaging contest is already bearing fruit. Below are the winners of all the competition categories: presentation packaging, Horeca and retail market packaging, and best label. Special awards for most innovative idea, best product line, originality of style, best collectibles, and social and educational value

Olio Officina

A journey among olive trees

In a photo gallery portraying olive trees, the landscape becomes an element of unmistakable beauty. Giorgio Sorcinelli has immortalized some very distinctive elements of olive trees, highlighting not only their magnificence, rusticity and adaptability to different territories, but also their surroundings

Lorenzo Cerretani


La Déclaration de Meknès

L’olivier comme "vecteur de développement durable et de lutte contre les changements climatiques et source d’énergie nouvelle et renouvelable pour les générations futures”. La 5ème edition du Forum international de l’Agro-pôle Olivier

Olio Officina


Talc in oil production

Talc addition was once considered taboo, but nowadays even the scientific world is starting to investigate its use and potential benefits. There is something we want to know: does talc affect the yield and quality of extra virgin olive oil? Professor Francesco Caponio, together with his colleagues from the University of Bari, is trying to answer this question. What happens when physical extraction adjuvants are added to olive paste during malaxation?

Lorenzo Cerretani


Without olive trees there is no future

Enough of this geriatric approach towards olive tree cultivation. We need renovation. How can we possibly conceive a sector operating at a loss? If there is no profit, olive cultivation makes no sense. At Olio Officina Anteprima in Alghero, the protagonists of the event were the “Captains Courageous”, oil masters Domenico and Pasquale Manca. With them, the most distinguished Italian authorities discuss the newest trends in olive tree cultivation

Luigi Caricato

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Olive oil is good

The International Olive Council participated in the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP22), which was held in Marrakech (Morocco) from 7 to 18 November 2016, and whereby the UN sought to adopt a framework for action against global warming

Olio Officina


Current trends in oil appraisal

Has the method employed for the sensory analysis of extra virgin olive oil reached the end of the line? Is it time to change approach and/or targets? These questions require urgent, unambiguous answers, and the entire oil sector must now respond. Currently there is a sort of distorted view. Too much attention is given to defects and too little to the positive traits of oil. We are training a class of defect hunters

Lorenzo Cerretani


What happens inside the olive

These pictures, taken by Giorgio Sorcinelli, portray olives at different stages of maturity. There are various methods to estimate their degree of ripeness. One of the most popular is the so-called Jaen index. Many scientific investigations concur that there is an optimal maturity level for every variety, offsetting the sensory features and aromatic profile of the olives, as well as their phenolic composition

Lorenzo Cerretani


Spain, the first global producer and exporter

Spain has increases its extra-EU exports of olive oil and olive pomace oil by 20% in the first 11 months of 2015/16 (October 2015-August 2016), compared to the previous crop year

International Olive Council

The 2017 Forme dell’Olio contest

Everything is ready for the fourth edition of the contest devoted to the packaging and labelling of olive oil. There is a great novelty this year: it is now possible to enter labels only, which will be judged separately in a distinct category. Quality, as we all know, lies not only in the content, but also in the container: its importance should be better acknowledged, and more attention should be paid to its aesthetics and functionality

Olio Officina


The best harvesting method

There is one question I am frequently asked: is it better to pick olives by hand, or use mechanical means? We should be aware that harvesting is a delicate and potentially risky procedure, because it may trigger the hydrolytic reactions that increase the free acidity levels in olive oil, with detrimental effects on its quality

Lorenzo Cerretani


The 2016 olive season in Italy

We do not expect it to be a memorable harvest. Quite the opposite, and many farmers are rather concerned. The olive fruit fly has wreaked havoc all over Italy, from north to south. Yet, compared to the disastrous 2014 season, there is a greater degree of optimism, because at least nobody was caught unprepared

Luigi Caricato


Olive harvests in the Mediterranean countries

What is the outlook of the olive harvesting season in the Mediterranean countries? The estimates of a renowned international olive oil broker who operates on the Greek, Spanish, Tunisian, Turkish and Moroccan markets. There is still a lot of uncertainty regarding the overall amounts of available oil and the prospects of the key olive-producing countries

Adriano Caramia