Argentine olive oil producers received more prizes than any other nationality at the fifth annual Olivinus International Olive Oil Competition held in Mendoza the last week of August. A total of 187 prizes were awarded.
Argentina took home 99 extra virgin olive oil prizes, including 21 Grand Prestige Gold, 32 Gold Prestige and 42 Gold awards. Over 400 producers, both national and international, competed in the event.
Prizes were distributed among eight countries. Spain followed Argentina with a total of 35 distinctions. Other winners included Uruguay with 21, Portugal with 10, Chile with 8, and Italy, Israel, Greece and Cyprus, all of whom received three awards.
Of the top winners — those designated Grand Prestige Gold by the judges — 80 percent were extra virgin olive oils produced right in Mendoza, Argentina’s main olive and wine growing province. Local Santa Augusta olive oil won the venerable prize for the second year in a row.
Enrique Américo Tittarelli
This year’s competition also marked the awarding of a lifetime achievement award to Enrique Américo Tittarelli. Serving as one of the expert judges for the fourth year in a row, Tittarelli was recognized as a pioneer in the development of olive oil production technology.