Six-Day Program in London to Train New Generation of Olive Oil Experts

Few spots remain in the first London edition of the renowned program on olive oil quality assessment.

Nov. 12, 2018
By Olive Oil Times Staff

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Few spots remain in the first Lon­don edi­tion of the Olive Oil Som­me­lier Cer­ti­fi­ca­tion Pro­gram, an inter­na­tional course jointly pro­duced by the Olive Oil Times Edu­ca­tion Lab and the Inter­na­tional Culi­nary Cen­ter.

It is the first time the course, which has trained hun­dreds of indus­try pro­fes­sion­als, chefs and enthu­si­asts in olive oil qual­ity assess­ment since it began in 2016, will ven­ture beyond its annual New York and Cal­i­for­nia ses­sions.

Cur­tis Cord, the exec­u­tive direc­tor of the pro­gram said there will be atten­dees from at least 15 coun­tries at the course, which will be held Jan­u­ary 20 – 25 in the Blooms­bury dis­trict in Lon­don’s West End.

This pro­gram is inter­na­tional in every respect,” said Cord. Our expert instruc­tors are from 8 coun­tries, the olive oils we are explor­ing and ana­lyz­ing are from every cor­ner of the world and past par­tic­i­pants have trav­eled to New York and Cal­i­for­nia from 28 coun­tries to take the course. So it was obvi­ous that we needed to branch out and bring this com­pre­hen­sive cur­ricu­lum to Lon­don.”

Grad­u­ates of the pro­gram have included olive oil pro­duc­ers; importers, dis­trib­u­tors and retail­ers; chefs, restau­ra­teurs and food­ser­vice pro­fes­sion­als; health pro­fes­sion­als, jour­nal­ists and entre­pre­neurs; and those who just want to deeply under­stand one of the world’s health­i­est foods. There are no pre­req­ui­sites to enroll in the course.


Pro­gram top­ics span olive oil tast­ing and qual­ity assess­ment, cul­ti­va­tion and his­tory, har­vest­ing and pro­duc­tion, health ben­e­fits, chem­istry, regions and cul­ti­vars, stan­dards and grades, culi­nary appli­ca­tions and con­sumer edu­ca­tion.

More than 100 olive oils curated from the largest col­lec­tion of sam­ples in the world are ana­lyzed in guided tast­ings to expose par­tic­i­pants to an unequaled vari­ety of regions, cul­ti­vars, pro­duc­tion tech­niques and unique sen­sory char­ac­ter­is­tics.

Instruc­tors will include Chilean olive oil expert Car­ola Dum­mer Med­ina; Ital­ian expert Anto­nio G. Lauro; Greek con­sul­tant Kon­stan­ti­nos Liris; ole­ol­o­gist Nicholas Cole­man; Brazil­ian chef and culi­nary instruc­tor Per­ola Polillo; physi­cian and author, Simon Poole; award-win­ning pro­duc­ers Karim Fitouri from Tunisia and Lucia Gamez, Sebas­t­ian Romero and Juan Igna­cio from Spain; and pro­gram direc­tor and Olive Oil Times pub­lisher, Cur­tis Cord.

Those who suc­cess­fully com­plete the course receive a joint Olive Oil Som­me­lier cer­ti­fi­ca­tion from the Inter­na­tional Culi­nary Cen­ter and the Olive Oil Times Edu­ca­tion Lab and join a grow­ing com­mu­nity of olive oil sen­sory ana­lysts and edu­ca­tors.

Past par­tic­i­pants of the pro­gram have said it was an edu­ca­tional expe­ri­ence that empow­ered them to take on a range of far-reach­ing ini­tia­tives.

The qual­ity and range of instruc­tion were at a level that far sur­passed my expec­ta­tions,” said Jacque­line Tyburski, who suc­cess­fully com­pleted the course in New York. The pro­gram was very bal­anced and in depth, with a real empha­sis on train­ing a new com­mu­nity of empow­ered, knowl­edge­able, and pas­sion­ate olive oil experts,”

I will apply what I have learned by going back to our pro­duc­tion pipeline from cul­ti­va­tion all the way to bot­tling,” said an olive oil pro­ducer from Sparta, Greece, Demos­the­nis Chro­nis. We can fine-tune some things so we get a bet­ter qual­ity olive oil and, hope­fully, an award-win­ning extra vir­gin olive oil.”

Fab­u­lous course with incred­i­ble amounts of infor­ma­tion that will be used as a ref­er­ence guide for years to come,” a pro­ducer from Turkey said of the New York pro­gram.

I highly rec­om­mend it. Every day was absolutely worth it,” a gro­cery exec­u­tive, Elise LaGamba said.

The qual­ity and range of instruc­tion were at a level that far sur­passed my expec­ta­tions,” said Willem Voor­vaart, an investor from the Nether­lands.

For more infor­ma­tion or to enroll in the Lon­don course, visit the Olive Oil Times Edu­ca­tion Lab web­site.

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