The Olive Tree Hotel in Jerusalem will be the felicitous location for the 6th edition of the Mediterranean International Extra Virgin Olive Oil Competition, TerraOlivo, which will be held June 7-14.
Created by Moises A. Spak and the Argentinian chemical engineer Raul C. Castellani to pay homage and bring attention to the area where olive oil cultivation was born thousands of years ago, Terraolivo has an international panel led by Dr. Antonio G. Lauro.
To allow more oils to join the competition, the deadline for the samples’ submission and arrival in Jerusalem was recently extended to June 7, the day when the tastings will begin.
While more than 270 samples already arrived, the organization decided to extend the deadline to wait for more Southern-Hemisphere extra virgin olive oils to be evaluated, especially those hailing from Australia and New Zealand, organizers said.
The aim is to exceed the 407 samples arrived last year, when the highest recognition — “International Grand Champion TerraOlivo 2014” — went to the Italian farm Il Brolo for its monocultivar Leccino DOP Garda Bresciano.
Italy’s samples this year dropped in number due to the difficult harvest, while the entries from Greece, Portugal and Spain increased compared to 2014. The awarded oils will be revealed on June 14, during an award ceremony.
Beside the international competition, the event offers a six-day tour of local olives, wines and the Holy Land’s landmarks, from the Dead Sea to Mount Zion and the Old Town of Jerusalem.