`New Olive Oil Outreach at Food and Nutrition Conference - Olive Oil Times

New Olive Oil Outreach at Food and Nutrition Conference

By Elena Paravantes
Oct. 15, 2012 12:16 UTC

Two olive oil orga­ni­za­tions were present for the first time at the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo (FNCE) that took place in Philadelphia last week. This annual con­fer­ence is orga­nized by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (for­mer American Dietetic Association), the world’s largest orga­ni­za­tion of food and nutri­tion pro­fes­sion­als.

The con­fer­ence drew more than 8,000 reg­is­tered dieti­tians, nutri­tion sci­ence researchers, pol­icy mak­ers, and health-care providers along with more than 350 food and nutri­tion-related exhibitors. But even though olive oil is con­sid­ered an ingre­di­ent with exten­sive health ben­e­fits, it had never really made an offi­cial appear­ance at the con­fer­ence.

This year the North American Olive Oil Association and the International Olive Council were both exhibitors at the expo­si­tion increas­ing knowl­edge and appre­ci­a­tion of the health­ful­ness and the ver­sa­til­ity of olive oil to dieti­tians and nutri­tion­ists.

Eryn Balch, vice pres­i­dent of the North American Olive Oil Association, said she was there to pro­vide dieti­tians with an under­stand­ing of prac­ti­cal issues such as the dif­fer­ent grades and types of olive oil, while pro­mot­ing the use of olive oil through its health ben­e­fits and culi­nary uses.

The International Olive Council pre­sented its North American cam­paign Add Some Life” launched last year. According to Bernice Neumann, prac­tice leader for food & nutri­tion of Exponent, the cam­paign focuses on bring­ing together olive oil and table olive pro­fes­sion­als to dis­cuss issues of inter­est to the olive indus­try, and it is geared to the con­sumer as well, shar­ing ways of mak­ing olives and olive oil a daily sta­ple.

Neumann said the cam­paign has been focus­ing on the influ­encers of the health and nutri­tion com­mu­nity,” because they are an impor­tant source of infor­ma­tion for con­sumers who need to change how they are eat­ing and for those who want to adopt health­ier eat­ing prac­tices.”

While most nutri­tion pro­fes­sion­als know that olive oil is healthy, many ques­tions and mis­con­cep­tions remain even among nutri­tion­ists, about its health ben­e­fits and uses in the kitchen. The pres­ence of the two orga­ni­za­tions at FNCE was a new resource for the food and nutri­tion com­mu­nity at the con­fer­ence.


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