`Olive Council Calls Proposed Aussie Standards "Barriers to Trade" - Olive Oil Times

Olive Council Calls Proposed Aussie Standards "Barriers to Trade"

Feb. 18, 2011
Olive Oil Times Staff

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Calling parts of the pro­posed olive oil stan­dards for Australia and New Zealand pos­si­ble bar­ri­ers to inter­na­tional trade” that could actu­ally make olive oil adul­ter­ation eas­ier”, the International Olive Council (IOC) issued a state­ment today rec­om­mend­ing a recon­sid­er­a­tion of the draft guide­lines.

The state­ment, titled IOC Comments on the Draft Australian/New Zealand Standard Olive Oils and Olive Pomace Oils”, laid out about twenty dis­crep­an­cies” — or parts of the pro­posed stan­dards incon­sis­tent with exist­ing IOC con­ven­tions — that included def­i­n­i­tions, olive oil cat­e­gories and test­ing meth­ods that dif­fer with, or do not exist in the IOC stan­dards. It would be expe­di­ent,” accord­ing to the doc­u­ment, for the Australian/New Zealand draft stan­dard to be re-exam­ined.”

Australia and New Zealand, which are not IOC mem­ber coun­tries, have long held that exist­ing IOC rules do not ade­quately pro­tect the region’s con­sumers and pro­duc­ers. Leandro Ravetti who helped draft the stan­dards told Olive Oil TimesUnscrupulous oper­a­tors who are cur­rently prof­it­ing from the sig­nif­i­cant price dif­fer­ence avail­able by decep­tively re-sell­ing seed oils and/or infe­rior qual­ity olive oil as high-value extra vir­gin olive oil will be seri­ously affected by this new reg­u­la­tion. Meanwhile, gen­uine and hon­est oper­a­tors from Australia, New Zealand and over­seas will receive the advan­tage of a level play­ing field where their higher qual­ity prod­ucts are pro­tected and rec­og­nized.”

In a clos­ing rem­i­nis­cent of the coun­cil’s response to meth­ods used in last year’s UC Davis study, another New World devi­a­tion from IOC pro­to­cols, today’s state­ment con­cluded:

As the pre­mier world organ­i­sa­tion over­see­ing olive oil, its sole con­cern on sub­mit­ting these com­ments is to safe­guard and facil­i­tate fair inter­na­tional trad­ing and pre­vent poten­tial adul­ter­ation or fraud. It is ready and will­ing at all times to work together with coun­tries and organ­i­sa­tions around the world, regard­less of whether or not they are Members of the IOC, to achieve these aims and will be happy to pro­vide any clar­i­fi­ca­tions required.”

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