The annual General Assembly meeting of AFIDOL, L’association Française Interprofessionnelle de L’Olive was held in Aix en Provence June 14. President Oliver Nasles outlined the activities for the past year of the private organization set up in 1999 to unite olive oil professionals, and to improve and develop the production, processing and marketing of olive oil.
Today Afidol has 54 members representing production, transformation and commercialization of olive oil, together with 26 members in the Administration Council.
Jean- Louis Barjol, executive director of the International Olive Council attended the meeting where he presented an update on world production, imports, exports and consumption. A new laboratory at the Centre Technique de L’Olivier (CTO), a subsidiary to Afidol, was inaugurated later that day in Mr. Barjol’s presence.
The dedicated chemical testing laboratory, the only one in France, has been entirely renovated with the help of European funding and support of the French Ministry of Agriculture and France Agrimer – the national institution for agriculture and sea products. Accredited by COFRAC (Comité Francaise d’ accreditation) CTO is now equipped with liquid chromatography,(UPLC) for identifying and quantifying olive oil phenolic compounds: with this, Afidol will be able to more effectively control quality standards for olives, olive oil and olive oil byproducts.
Afidol is developing a commercial market of olive oil in the United Kingdom. After a timid start to develop a program for exports in 2011, Afidol has now established a clear commercial plan involving British buyers, importers and restaurant owners, and a dozen or so French olive oil establishments.
Afidol realizes the importance of informing and guiding French marketers of olive oil on ‘best used by dates’, or DLUO (date limite d’utilisation Optimale). Because French olive oil is so diverse, Afidol sees this as a major problem and began three studies last year as to how best advise marketers on DLUO. Different types of olive oils are being collected, analyzed and stocked by CTO in their laboratories. The results will be published in 2015.