Turkey Holds First 'Mario Solinas' National Olive Oil Competition

A new competition in Turkey aims to raise the bar for local producers and improve collaboration within the olive sector.

Photo: IOC
May 22, 2017 8:11 AM EDT
By Suzan Kantarci Savas
Photo: IOC

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A new national olive oil com­pe­ti­tion was held for the first time in Turkey recently with awards being handed out to win­ners dur­ing a cer­e­mony on April 28, 2017.

The IOC Mario Solinas Turkey Quality Award Extra Virgin Olive Oil Competition was pre­sented by the National Olive and Olive Oil Council (UZZK) under the aus­pices of the International Olive Council (IOC). The aim of the com­pe­ti­tion is to raise the bar in Turkey with regard to infra­struc­ture and ulti­mately oil qual­ity, while increas­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion with pub­lic and non-gov­ern­men­tal orga­ni­za­tions, uni­ver­si­ties and the pri­vate sec­tor.

Samples were accepted for sub­mis­sion to the com­pe­ti­tion until March 10, after which a tech­ni­cal com­mit­tee made up of uni­ver­sity pro­fes­sors exam­ined the entries to see if they com­plied with com­pe­ti­tion rules. Twenty-one olive oils were accepted for entry into the com­pe­ti­tion and judged by a jury made up of eight panel mem­bers rec­og­nized by the IOC on March 20 – 21, 2017.

At an award cer­e­mony held at the 7th Olivtech Olive, Olive Oil and Technologies Fair on April 28, 2017, gold, sil­ver and bronze medals were awarded to the win­ning pro­duc­ers, as well as three hon­or­able men­tions for each cat­e­gory (intense, medium, and ripe and mild Fruitiness). Presiding the cer­e­mony was Abdellatif Ghedira, exec­u­tive direc­tor of the IOC.

Turkey was a mem­ber of the IOC from 1962 until 1998 when the Turkish Government decided to with­draw its mem­ber­ship. In September 2016 it once again signed up to be a mem­ber.


The Turkish National Olive and Olive Oil Council (UZZK) was estab­lished in 2007 to address prob­lems encoun­tered by those work­ing in the olive sec­tor. The orga­ni­za­tion aims to bring the Turkish olive sec­tor in line with inter­na­tional stan­dards and increase pro­duc­tion, while build­ing links between pro­duc­ers, indus­tri­al­ists, and the domes­tic and for­eign mar­kets. It also strives to be a bridge between the gov­ern­ment, civil soci­ety orga­ni­za­tions, the pri­vate sec­tor, and uni­ver­si­ties.

According to data pro­vided by the National Olive and Olive Oil Council (UZZK), the num­ber of olive trees in Turkey has risen to 170 mil­lion in the past decade. Olive oil pro­duc­tion for the 2016/2017 sea­son is expected to reach approx­i­mately 177,365 met­ric tons, a 29 per­cent increase com­pared to last year. Last year Turkey was the sec­ond largest pro­ducer of olive oil after the European Union, and is expected to keep this posi­tion for 2016/2017 (accord­ing to IOC fig­ures).

IOC Mario Solinas Turkey Quality Award

Gold Medal Winners

Intense Fruitiness – Zetay – Zetay Tarım Hayvancılık Imalat Sanayive Ticaret
Medium Fruitiness – Olivurla – Turla Tarım Gıda Ltd.
Ripe and Mild Fruitiness – Pirgion – Ahmet Çakıroğlu Eka Zeytinyağı Ve Gıda İmalatı Ticareti

Silver Medal Winners

Intense Fruitiness – Tuay –Turgut Anadolu Yatırım Ltd
Medium Fruitiness – Seroliva – Oliva Gida San. Tic. Ltd
Ripeand Mild Fruitiness – Selme – Ömer Faruk Kantarci Hlf.A. Selim Kantarci

Bronze Medals Winners

Intense Fruitiness – Kristal – Ticaret Ve Sanayi Kontuvari
Medium Fruitiness – Cömert – Cmrt Zeytinyaği San. Tic. Ltd.
Ripe and Mild Fruitiness – Onursel – Onursel Zeytincilik

Honorable Mentions

Intense Fruitiness – Gülcü – Gülcü Zeytinyaği Sanayi Ticaret Koll.
Medium Fruitiness – Nova Vera –Nova Vera Gıda Ve Tarım Tic.Ltd.
Ripe and Mild Fruitiness – Revnak – Garanti Zeytinve Zeytinyaği Ltd.

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