'Elaiolado Makris' Gets PDO Status

Extra virgin olive oil from Makri becomes the first agricultural product from the region of Thrace to receive Protected Designation of Origin status from the European Union.

Aug. 17, 2020
By Costas Vasilopoulos

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Makri extra vir­gin olive oil, from Greece, has received Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) sta­tus from the European Union.

The des­ig­na­tion for­mally rec­og­nizes olive oils pro­duced from the Elia Makris vari­ety, which is indige­nous to the north­east­ern Greek region, as being unique and pro­tects the name from being used by imi­ta­tion oils.

See Also: Olive Oil Business News

Elaiolado Makris’ (mean­ing olive oil from Makri’) was inserted in the E.U.‘s offi­cial PDO reg­is­ter on August 10, after the appli­ca­tion had been sub­mit­ted to the European Commission back in January 2018.

Since 1992, when the qual­ity schemes for European agri­cul­tural prod­ucts and food prod­ucts were intro­duced, a total of 20 Greek olive oils have received PDO sta­tus. It is the first olive oil and the first agri­cul­tural prod­uct over­all from the north­ern Greek ter­ri­tory of Thrace to receive PDO sta­tus.

The Makri vari­ety is indige­nous to the area of the Makri vil­lage near Alexandroupolis, yield­ing an olive oil described as sweet, with fla­vors of fresh herbs, flow­ers and exotic fruits.

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After years of tar­geted efforts of the pre­fec­tural admin­is­tra­tion of Evros, Makri olive oil stands out at an inter­na­tional level,” Dimitris Petrovic, the deputy gov­er­nor of the Evros pre­fec­ture, said. This acknowl­edge­ment gives added value to the excel­lent olive oil of our area.”

Paschalis Papadakis, the for­mer head of the local agri­cul­tural ser­vice and the man who coor­di­nated the cam­paign, told Athens News Agency that the process of gath­er­ing the data and evi­dence to sup­port the appli­ca­tion for the PDO label for Makri olive oil was lengthy and stren­u­ous.

It was­n’t only the required analy­ses from var­i­ous lab­o­ra­to­ries and the whole bureau­cracy, but we also had to come up with the trade­mark sign we filed to the Commission to be used on the pack­ag­ing,” Papadakis said.

Our research even took us to the library of [Istanbul], where we spent many days look­ing for the rel­e­vant his­tor­i­cal doc­u­ments,” he added. We found the book in which the sul­tan’s sec­re­tary had writ­ten that they had dis­cov­ered mighty olive trees in Makri dur­ing a tour in 1600.”

According to Papadakis’ esti­mates, the whole Makri olive oil pro­duc­ing region con­sists of about 220,000 olive trees aged between 2,000 and 3,000 years, with an annual pro­duc­tion of 1,000 to 3,000 tons of olive oil, depend­ing on each sea­son’s yield.

Apart from the PDO qual­ity label, Makri olive oil also received a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) tag to sig­nify its place of ori­gin.





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