The future of the International Olive Council is among key topics to be discussed at the annual session of its decision-making organ, the Council of Members, in Madrid this week.
Representatives of the IOC’s 18 members countries are attending the session and for the first time are joined by a representative of the United States — believed to be a Madrid-based employee of the U.S. Department of Agriculture — attending as an observer.
Running from November 25 to 29, the 101st regular session of the council includes a range of meetings of specialist committees.
On Monday and Tuesday the Working Group on the Future of the IOC was to continue debating the future of the IOC in the lead-up to the expiry of the 2005 International Agreement on Olive Oil and Table Olives at the end of next year.
Outcome of work on new testing methods and new promotion schemes also on the agenda
Among other topics to be discussed at the council are:
- the production, consumption and trade statistics for olive oil and table olives for 2011/12 (final), 2012/13 (provisional) and 2013/14 (estimated) are to be reported to the IOC’s Economic Committee by the Executive Secretariat
- producer prices and how currency aspects affect international trade in olive oil will be analysed by the same committee
- the conclusions reached at meetings of the working groups on IOC statistics and the harmonised tariff codes system will be presented
- promotion activities scheduled for 2014 and those carried out since the last, extraordinary session of the IOC will be reviewed by the Promotion Committee
- the proposed approval of a grant for generic promotional activities to boost consumption in IOC member countries will be put to Committee members
- the outcome of work on new testing methods and of the olive oil authentification seminar, the Mario Solinas Quality Award, the conclusions of the working group on quality strategy, the harmonisation of the Codex and IOC table olive standards and the IOC laboratory and panel recognition scheme will be among matters reported by the Executive Secretariat to the Technical Committee
- results from several ongoing projects (irrigation management (IRRIGAOLIVO), genetic resources (RESGEN), pilot demonstration olive nurseries, world olive germplasm collections, carbon footprint) will be shared with the same committee
- the IOC budget, the contributions of the member countries, and proposed amendments to administrative procedures are among items to be discussed by the Financial Committee
Welcome to new IOC member Uruguay
On Thursday evening the IOC is hosting a World Olive Day reception for delegations, the press and the diplomatic corps.
The plenary session on Friday will include an official welcome to Uruguay, the IOC’s newest Member, after which IOC Executive Director Jean-Louis Barjol will present his activity report and the chairs of each IOC committee, including the IOC Advisory Committee, will report on the outcome of their deliberations.
The IOC’s 18 members are Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Croatia, Egypt, the European Union, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Montenegro, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey and Uruguay.
Members of the press are not allowed to observe IOC meetings.