` Commissioner's Answer Still "No" to Aid for Private Olive Oil Storage - Olive Oil Times

Commissioner's Answer Still "No" to Aid for Private Olive Oil Storage

May. 27, 2011
Julie Butler

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Despite receiv­ing a peti­tion with 50,000 sup­port­ing sig­na­tures from Spain alone, the European Commission today stood firm on its rejec­tion of calls for the intro­duc­tion of pri­vate stor­age aid for olive oil.

European Commissioner for Agriculture Dacian Cioloş did how­ever agree to review the thresh­old prices for the aid as part of the cur­rent rene­go­ti­a­tion of the E.U.‘s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

Representatives of olive oil pro­duc­ers in France, Italy, Spain and Portugal who met with Cioloş in Brussels today said he had also told them he was open to look­ing at other, medium and longer term steps to help the strug­gling sec­tor. These included the pos­si­bil­ity of mea­sures to reduce frag­men­ta­tion among pro­duc­ers and for increased pro­mo­tion of olive oil.

Gregorio López, olive oil spokesman for Spanish agrar­ian orga­ni­za­tion COAG, said that the Commissioner had at least seemed recep­tive and will­ing to intro­duce the stor­age aid later, if he saw it as necessary.”

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During their meet­ing with Cioloş, the pro­ducer groups pre­sented their esti­mate that tak­ing 50,000 tons of olive oil off the mar­ket in Europe would cost about 1.8 mil­lion euros ($2.6 mil­lion) in E.C. stor­age aid yet would deliver ben­e­fits worth about 300 mil­lion euros ($428 mil­lion) to producers.

Eduardo Martín, gen­eral sec­re­tary of ASAJA, an asso­ci­a­tion of young agri­cul­tur­ists, said that Spanish pro­duc­ers were cur­rently los­ing 50 cents ($0.71) on every liter of EVOO they produced.

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