Daily Archives: March 17, 2014

  • European olives feed biofuel innovation

    Scientists and engineers at Vienna’s University of Technology are laboring over a shiny steel construction standing almost two storeys high. It’s a new generation “gasification plant,” which the university pioneered a couple of decades ago. It turns biomass into gas, and in Austria and a number of other European countries, that gas is used to run generators and produce electricity.

    The problem operators now face is buying biomass to feed these power plants at a price which makes them competitive with other renewable and fossil fuel energy sources. With prices for wood and biofuel crops on the increase, the European Union is funding a project called which aims to turn the pomace – what’s left of the olive after its oil is pressed out – into biofuel.

    “When you look at the olive mill operator he wants to get as much as possible out of the olive, and he tries everything he can to get as much out if it as possible,” Stefan Müller, a senior researcher at the university’s , told DW.

    Müller is part of a team exploring the energy potential of olive pomace. He lines up bottles of the olive residue on his desk. Some are identifiable as the remains of olives, others look more like dark beach sand. Müller calls the dark sand material “olivine,” and explains it’s the feed stock for the gasification plant.

    “At the end we have these residues and there isn’t much olive oil left in there. So this is a kind of waste material from an olive mill, but it still has quite a high energy content.”

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    Scientists and engineers at Vienna’s University of Technology are laboring over a shiny steel construction standing almost two storeys high. It’s a new generation “gasification plant,” which the university pioneered a couple of decades ago. It turns biomass... 
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  • 2 Israeli Olive Oils in the Japanese 'Varietal' Market

    Shoham olive oil from Kfar Kish in the Lower Galilee and Saba Haviv olive oil from the Upper Galilee recently entered the Japanese market.

    Dr. Adi Na’ali, who manages the olive department of the Plants Council said penetration of the market is part of an international trend that the council is seeking.

    He returned this week from Canada, where people were enthusiastic about the product. In light of growing production, he said the department is exploring work with a number of government offices to enter other markets.

    Haya Shoham noted that her product was the only olive oil to enter an exclusive list of Japan’s top 100 foods.

    Men’em Jahshan of Saba Haviv said, “The Japanese came to us through the quality seal of the olive department because they’re interested in oil varieties, which characterizes what Israel grows. Israeli oil is considered expensive relative to European oils, but the Japanese know and appreciate quality.

    They sent us experts on their behalf to taste the fat and choose the varieties that best fit Japanese tastes and palate.”

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    Shoham olive oil from Kfar Kish in the Lower Galilee and Saba Haviv olive oil from the Upper Galilee recently entered the Japanese market. Dr. Adi Na’ali, who manages the olive department of the Plants Council said penetration of the market is part of an international... 
    Read More →