A two day event designed to promote business relations between Italian wine and olive oil producers and Indian buyers is taking place in New Delhi today and tomorrow.
During the event, which will be attended by Indian journalists, chefs, restaurateurs and buyers, Italian olive oil will be represented by UNAPROL, the largest organization of Italian olive oil producers, which unites as many as 700,000 olive growers nationwide.
This presentation comes as part of the planned activities financed under the first contract for the supply of extra virgin olive oil that was signed between UNAPROL and the Italian Ministry of Agricultural Food and Forestry Policies on December 20th last year, and which was further aided by VeronaFiere, an Italian organization aimed at developing international trade for Italian brands.
The agreement marks a €400,000 investment by the Italian government over a two year period. Since the start of this year, which saw the operational phase of the agreement get underway, UNAPROL has moved operations into full swing, promoting Italian olive oil at events around the globe with a vast number of cities on its calendar including San Francisco, New York, Hong Kong, Moscow, Stockholm, and Tokyo.
In a statement made on the eve of the New Delhi event, UNAPROL’s Chairman, Massimo Gargano, noted that the success of these promotions is rooted in foreign markets developing a better understanding both of the product on offer and the environment in which it is produced. “The market recognizes the quality,” he said, “and rewards it with a higher price if this is related to the origin of the territories.”
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Over the two days there will be a number of tasting seminars, B2B conferences, and presentations focusing on the use of Italian olive oil in Indian cooking and further stressing its health benefits and quality. “The market reacts positively to certified quality,” Gargano went on to say, “especially if it is guaranteed by a consortium of Italian farms that leverage the unique and distinctive character of oil made in Italy.”
Recent years have seen the consumption of olive oil raise considerably within India and this event will be an important test as to whether Italian olive oil can stand out above competition from other countries in a market with over a billion potential consumers. India is the worlds largest importer of vegetable oils and current trends seem to suggest that it is continuing to develop a demand for high quality products.
In 2010, Italy exported 4,000 tons of olive oil, a quarter of which was extra virgin, to India. It was a 25 percent increase from the previous year and if Italy can go on to successfully leverage prices and establish its olive oil as a high-end product in the eyes of new consumers, these figures can be expected to rise.