Monthly Archives: February 2014

  • Qatar's Harrods forced to remove 'fake' olive oil

    Harrods, the London luxury department store owned by Qatar, has been forced to remove a range of Tuscan virgin olive oil after Italian food authorities complained it had actually been bottled in the UK.

    Harrods’ branded ‘Tuscan Extra Virgin Olive Oil’ came under fire from Italian government officials, who travelled to London and lodged an objection with the labelling of the product.

    While the bottled oilive oil was made using olives form Tuscan the bottling process was carried out in the UK.

    “Labels like that suggest the product’s Tuscanness but it was bottled in the UK, as in fact it said on the label, and this contravenes the product protocol laid down by the European Community,” Stefano Vaccari, the Italian inspector who led the case, was quoted as saying by the Daily Mail newspaper.

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    Harrods, the London luxury department store owned by Qatar, has been forced to remove a range of Tuscan virgin olive oil after Italian food authorities complained it had actually been bottled in the UK. Harrods’ branded ‘Tuscan Extra Virgin Olive Oil’ came under... 
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  • Olive Oil Importer Can't Escape Mislabeling Claims

    A New York federal judge refused Monday to toss a class action alleging Kangadis Food Inc. misleads customers by advertising adulterated olive oil as “100 percent pure,” ruling that consumers can move forward with their claims because the product contains olive-residue oil that dilutes its purity.

    U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff denied Kangadis’ motion for summary judgment, finding that the consumers meet the requirements to sue for breach of warranty and violations of consumer protection laws. Read more at Law360

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    A New York federal judge refused Monday to toss a class action alleging Kangadis Food Inc. misleads customers by advertising adulterated olive oil as “100 percent pure,” ruling that consumers can move forward with their claims because the product contains olive-residue oil... 
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  • Slippery path into China's olive oil market

    Storing olive oil in plastic containers could become a thing of the past if the Australian olive oil industry wants to successfully export to China.

    Chinese authorities have a problem with plastics tainting the oil and they’re prepared to destroy consignments or send them back to Australia if tests prove positive.

    Lisa Rowntree, from the Australian Olive Association, admits the food standards are tough.

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    Storing olive oil in plastic containers could become a thing of the past if the Australian olive oil industry wants to successfully export to China. Chinese authorities have a problem with plastics tainting the oil and they’re prepared to destroy consignments or send them... 
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  • 5 interesting ways to use olive oil outside the kitchen

    How much do you end up paying for makeup remover? Shaving cream? Hair conditioner? Over time, the cost of these products begin to consistently leave a dent in your wallet. So what if we told you that there is one thing out there that serves all three aforementioned purposes … and more? Meet your new best friend: extra virgin olive oil, or EVOO. EVOO has been mechanically rather than chemically extracted — in other words, it’s a healthy and flavorful option you can feel good about. For between $5 and $15, you can lug home a large, good-quality liter of this baby from your local market and use it to replace a variety of products:

    1. Makeup remover. We swear by this. Although there is this idea that people with oily skin should avoid oil-based products, this is a huge misconception. Excess oil production is due to dry skin — the skin is only trying to compensate for lack of moisture. So put some olive oil on a cotton ball and gently wipe your face. Afterward, wash with a gentle soap or face cleanser, moisturize and voila! No more days of scrubbing that gunk off and chafing your poor skin raw.

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    How much do you end up paying for makeup remover? Shaving cream? Hair conditioner? Over time, the cost of these products begin to consistently leave a dent in your wallet. So what if we told you that there is one thing out there that serves all three aforementioned purposes …... 
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  • SPAIN: Olive oil group Deoleo receives "indicative" bids

    Spain-based olive oil supplier Deoleo has revealed it has received “indicative” takeover offers for the business.

    A spokesperson for Deoleo said “a small group” of suitors had made non-binding bids that were lower than the company’s share price.

    She refused to be drawn on the identity of the interested parties and said: “The process is still going on and as soon as there are any news we will communicate it to the [stock-market regulator] CNMV.”

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    Spain-based olive oil supplier Deoleo has revealed it has received “indicative” takeover offers for the business. A spokesperson for Deoleo said “a small group” of suitors had made non-binding bids that were lower than the company’s share price. She... 
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  • Olive-oil uproar erupts in Greece over cheaper ‘blended’ product

    In the olive groves around Ancient Olympia, sanctuary of the Greek gods, the trees were once considered sacred, and in many ways they still are.

    Carefully pruned and pampered, they are described by farmers with a reverence that could match the language used by makers of champagne or single malt whisky.

    So plans to extend a brutal efficiency drive to olive oil production have been met with anger and disbelief. If proposals from a government-funded study are adopted, olive oil blended with cheaper vegetable oils will soon go on sale as part of an effort to modernize Greece’s economy, which was rescued from near bankruptcy four years ago.

    One pro-government lawmaker called the proposal a “cause of war,” while olive producers in the fabled hills of the southern Peloponnese region worry that Greece could spoil its own signature product.

    Illegal under current Greek law, the new product would need to prominently carry the label: “blended olive oil.” EU law does not prohibit blends, which are sometimes used in canned food, including in Spain, the world’s largest olive-oil producer.

    “Greece would lose its monopoly on quality,” olive grower Aris Kolotouros said. “It would create a faceless product.”

    On the featured photo: Greek Orthodox Priest Dimitris Vlasopoulos collects olives from a canvas tarp in Kalo Pedi village, about 335 kilometres west of Athens. Plans to extend a brutal efficiency drive to olive-oil production in Greece have been met with anger and disbelief.

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    In the olive groves around Ancient Olympia, sanctuary of the Greek gods, the trees were once considered sacred, and in many ways they still are. Carefully pruned and pampered, they are described by farmers with a reverence that could match the language used by makers of champagne... 
    Read More →
  • Syrian olive oil exporters try to revive businesses

    Three years into Syria’s war, some exporters who moved to neighboring countries to escape the violence that has devastated many businesses now want to return home.

    While production in Syria is running at a small fraction of pre-conflict levels, advances by forces of President Bashar al-Assad against rebels in the past year have improved security in some areas for entrepreneurs who largely lean towards the government side.

    On top of this, bosses such as olive oil exporter Antoun Betinjaneh have found that shifting production across the border to Lebanon makes little financial sense.
    Betinjaneh, a newly-appointed member of the Syrian Exporters Federation, said that for all the turmoil, the state offered cheaper utilities and land on attractive terms.

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    Three years into Syria’s war, some exporters who moved to neighboring countries to escape the violence that has devastated many businesses now want to return home. While production in Syria is running at a small fraction of pre-conflict levels, advances by forces of President... 
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  • Spain is the world's largest olive oil producer, and sales are picking up

    The olive oil effect

    Its banks are a mess and unemployment is rampant. So why are officials from Spain’s economic ministry all smiles?

    Thanks to record-setting exports and a fall in imports, Spain chopped its trade deficit in half last year, according to data published by the ministry (link in Spanish). Overall, exports grew by 5.2% in 2013, one of the better performances from a large European economy. (The UK managed only 1% export growth, Germany and Italy saw exports stagnate, and France saw sales slide by 1.6%.)

    This is important, because as long as Spain’s local economy remains in the doldrums, one of its best hopes for boosting growth comes from selling goods, like its vast reserves of olive oil, to healthier economies abroad. For example, the surprisingly strong UK economy sucked in 14% more Spanish exports last year than the year before, which nearly doubled Spain’s trade surplus with Britain. Exports to fast-growing emerging markets in Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America also rose smartly.

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    The olive oil effect Its banks are a mess and unemployment is rampant. So why are officials from Spain’s economic ministry all smiles? Thanks to record-setting exports and a fall in imports, Spain chopped its trade deficit in half last year, according to data published by the... 
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  • Fifth Annual Kelseyville Olive Festival Sunday, April 27, 2014

    Fifth annual Kelseyville Olive Festival features olive oil tasting, education, contests, an event which focuses on the olive industry in Lake County, as well as other local products, will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, April 27, at Chacewater Winery & Olive Mill, located at 5625 Gaddy Lane.

    The festival will feature locally produced olive oil, education and demonstrations, and a variety of other contests and activities for the whole family.

    Vendors offering olive-related and other local products will be present the day of the event, offering samples and selling products, as well as providing educational materials about olives and our local industry. A children’s area will also be featured.

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    Fifth annual Kelseyville Olive Festival features olive oil tasting, education, contests, an event which focuses on the olive industry in Lake County, as well as other local products, will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, April 27, at Chacewater Winery & Olive Mill,... 
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  • Veronica Foods Ultra Premium Olive Oil behind the scenes at the Sochi Olympics

    This year in Sochi, Russia, Oakland’s presence at the Olympiad has more to do with what’s inside people’s stomachs than their athleticism.

    Back in September, John Crisafulli, president of Behind the Scenes Catering and Events, was well into his search for the finest ingredients to feed U.S. and Canadian media members — as well as some American athletes — when he called Veronica Foods on Oakland’s Embarcadero.

    Crisafulli has been serving food around the clock at the Olympics since the 2000 summer games in Sydney, Australia.

    It was this stringent search for quality that led Crisafulli to Veronica Foods.

    Oakland’s own Veronica Foods olive oil behind the scenes at the Sochi Olympics.

    Veronica Foods specializes in what they call Ultra Premium Olive Oil, a strict standard above extra virgin that tests for freshness by taste and chemical composition. For a while now, Behind the Scenes Catering has been sourcing its olive oil and balsamic vinegars through a San Diego store called Baker and Olive based on a recommendation from one its chefs.

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    This year in Sochi, Russia, Oakland’s presence at the Olympiad has more to do with what’s inside people’s stomachs than their athleticism. Back in September, John Crisafulli, president of Behind the Scenes Catering and Events, was well into his search for the finest ingredients... 
    Read More →
  • Extra virgin? US olive oil industry seeks greater government scrutiny of imports

    Need olive oil? American shoppers are more likely to pick a European brand, which is cheaper and viewed as more authentic than U.S. produced olive oil.

    But U.S. producers contend that “extra virgin” olive oil from Europe may not be as pure as you think. They’ve asked the federal government to intervene by imposing stricter standards on the imports, which now make up 97 per cent of the market.

    Olive oil production is steadily growing, and the domestic industry says it has gone from 1 per cent of the national olive oil market five years ago to 3 per cent today. Most of that is in California, though there are smaller operations in Texas, Georgia and a few other states.

    U.S. producers are seeking to build on that growth in a struggle reminiscent of the California wine industry’s push to gain acceptance decades ago.

    They’ve mounted an aggressive push in Washington, holding olive oil tastings for members of Congress and lobbying for stricter standards on imports. The strategy almost worked last year when industry-proposed language was included in a massive farm bill passed out of the House Agriculture Committee.

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    Need olive oil? American shoppers are more likely to pick a European brand, which is cheaper and viewed as more authentic than U.S. produced olive oil. But U.S. producers contend that “extra virgin” olive oil from Europe may not be as pure as you think. They’ve... 
    Read More →
  • Cretan olive oil harvests down 60%, but could be 'tastiest ever'

    Cretan olive oil experts are predicting harvests to be down as much as 60% on the year before, which could have an effect on the amount of olive oils from Crete hitting store shelves this spring.

    That said, the same experts also believe that this year’s olive oils could be some of the best ever tasted thanks to the unique variety of trees they have on the island.

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    Cretan olive oil experts are predicting harvests to be down as much as 60% on the year before, which could have an effect on the amount of olive oils from Crete hitting store shelves this spring. That said, the same experts also believe that this year’s olive oils could... 
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  • Unilever's Bertolli has appointed Mother London to handle its global advertising business

    Francesco Bertolli founded Bertolli in Tuscany in 1865, starting as a producer of extra-virgin olive oil. The brand has since grown into a range of Italian and Mediterranean food, including pasta sauces, ready meals and olive oil spread, sold in ten different markets around the world. Bertolli’s global ad budget wasn’t disclosed but the brand isn’t a big spender; U.K. spending was about $4 million last year.

    At its results presentation in January 2014, Unilever said that food sales were the slowest-growing portion of its portfolio, at just 0.3% last year.

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    Francesco Bertolli founded Bertolli in Tuscany in 1865, starting as a producer of extra-virgin olive oil. The brand has since grown into a range of Italian and Mediterranean food, including pasta sauces, ready meals and olive oil spread, sold in ten different markets around the... 
    Read More →
  • US olive oil pushing government to test imported oils

    It’s a pressing matter for the tiny U.S. olive oil industry: American shoppers more often are going for European imports, which are cheaper and viewed as more authentic.

    And that’s pitting U.S. producers against importers of the European oil, with some likening the battle to the California wine industry’s struggles to gain acceptance decades ago.

    The tiny California olive industry says European olive oil filling U.S. shelves often is mislabeled and lower-grade oil, and they’re pushing the federal government to give more scrutiny to imported varieties. One congressman-farmer even goes so far as suggesting labels on imported oil say “extra rancid” rather than “extra virgin.”

    Imposing stricter standards might help American producers grab more market share from the Europeans, who produce in bulk and now have 97 percent of the U.S. market.

    Olive oil production is growing steadily. The domestic industry, with mostly high-end specialty brands, has gone from 1 percent of the national olive oil market five years ago to 3 percent today. Most of the production is in California, although there are smaller operations in Texas, Georgia and a few other states.

    Seeking to build on that, the domestic industry has mounted an aggressive push in Washington, holding olive oil tastings for members of Congress and lobbying them to put stricter standards on imports. The strategy almost worked last year when industry-proposed language became part of a massive farm bill passed out of the House Agriculture Committee.

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    It’s a pressing matter for the tiny U.S. olive oil industry: American shoppers more often are going for European imports, which are cheaper and viewed as more authentic. And that’s pitting U.S. producers against importers of the European oil, with some likening the... 
    Read More →
  • First-ever 'Florida Olive Forum' comes to DeLand Saturday, Feb. 22

    As freezing weather and citrus greening cause citrus groves in West Volusia to shrink, another crop is moving to the forefront: olives. Experiments in growing the crop locally are proving fruitful.

    For people interested in exploring the oily fruit’s possibilities, the first-ever “Florida Olive Forum” will offer information and advice 9:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 22, at the Volusia County Agricultural Center. The forum will take place in the auditorium at the Ag Center, which is next to the Volusia County Fairgrounds at 3100 E. New York Ave. in DeLand.

    Dana Venrick, owner and president of Quality Green Specialists in DeLand, is a sponsor and organizer of the event. He and people he has advised are having success growing olive trees, he said.

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    As freezing weather and citrus greening cause citrus groves in West Volusia to shrink, another crop is moving to the forefront: olives. Experiments in growing the crop locally are proving fruitful. For people interested in exploring the oily fruit’s possibilities, the first-ever... 
    Read More →
  • Messinian Olive Oil Leads Greek Olive Oil Production

    The prefecture of Messinia has been declared the leading Greek prefecture in olive oil production. Thirty-eight percent of this year’s olive oil production in Greece came from Messinia, especially in a problematic period for the Greek olive oil industry.

    “Only this year has Messinia produced 38,000 tons of olive oil when the total olive oil production in Greece was about 100,000 tons.” said the president of the Panmessinian Association of Olive Oil Producers, Antonis Korakakis.

    He also stressed that this year, total Greek production decreased by 35 percent as compared to previous years, considering the weather and other natural conditions destroyed the crops and affected the production. “Messinia ranked first because it was less affected by the problems. Conversely, in Crete and in Northern Greece the production decreased by 80 to 90 percent,” Korakakis explained.

    As far as olive oil price is concerned, this year the producers are selling each kilogram of olive oil for 2.70 euros compared to 2.80 euros last year.

    Furthermore, he pointed out that the producers should always try to standardize their oil and promote it to the markets in order to earn more money and thrive.
    Source greekreporter

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    The prefecture of Messinia has been declared the leading Greek prefecture in olive oil production. Thirty-eight percent of this year’s olive oil production in Greece came from Messinia, especially in a problematic period for the Greek olive oil industry. “Only this year has... 
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  • recipe: Georgian chicken with walnut sauce “Satsivi” and olive oil

    This walnut sauce is based on a Georgian recipe called “satsivi”. The authentic sauce is thinner, but I prefer it chunky. Bulgur wheat, farro or brown rice are good on the side.

    Serves six

    For the chicken:
    – 1.8kg (4lb) chicken
    – 1 tsp cayenne pepper
    – 2 tbsp olive oil
    – 1 lemon, halved

    For the beetroot:
    – 400g (14oz) beetroots
    – 1½ tbsp olive oil
    – 3 garlic cloves, crushed
    – ½ tsp ground coriander
    – 15g (½oz) flat-leaf parsley, stalks removed, leaves roughly chopped
    – 2 tsp red-wine vinegar
    – ½ tbsp greek extra-virgin olive oil Fitia

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    This walnut sauce is based on a Georgian recipe called “satsivi”. The authentic sauce is thinner, but I prefer it chunky. Bulgur wheat, farro or brown rice are good on the side. Serves six For the chicken: – 1.8kg (4lb) chicken – 1 tsp cayenne pepper – 2... 
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