David Granieri, the 35 year-old owner of a farm in Nerola, was elected by the members’ assembly as the new chairman of Unaprol, Europe’s biggest olive oil producers’ consortium. Granieri, himself an olive oil producer, takes the place of Massimo Gargano, who led the Union for the last eight years.

David Granieri

Granieri is a member of the Coldiretti National Committee and the president of the Lazio regional Committee. The assembly also completely reshuffled Unaprol’s board appointing new members that will be in charge until 2017. Among them, Unaprol’s tasting panel leader Giulio Scatolini and Aifo (the association of olive mills) chairman Piero Gonnelli.

Unaprol’s board of directors represent 71 local associations in Italy. It is the biggest network in Europe, representing a huge database of information about olive oil and olive growing through over 7,000 monitored farms and 640 certified production chains. It also includes a number of other associations that share common principles and aims, such as: the Elaion Consortium, I.O.O.% Alta Qualità Italiana (the traceability label for Italian olive oil), FOI Italian oil chain, Pandolea (the Italian women producers’ association), Uliveti del Lazio (the regional producers association), AIFO and Federdop, which includes every producers’ association of PDO extra virgin olive oil. The board will meet again soon to vote for the executive committee.

In his acceptance speech, the newly-elected chairman expressed his gratitude to the outgoing Gargano for his commitment to Unaprol’s guidance through the years. “Our aim, “he said, “is to protect the origin of the “Made in Italy” labeled product. Our country can be a winner in the world’s market only if it promotes the product of its thousand lands and territories”.

Granieri also pointed out the need to invest in the biodiversity, the real competitive asset of the Italian products. “Expo 2015,” he added, “represents a good opportunity for the single farms and enterprises and for the whole industry. We need to seize this opportunity by taking advantage of the EU agricultural policy and promotional programmes.”

On the occasion of Granieri’s appointment, Unaprol also released data collected and processed by the association’s Economic Observatory. The results show that the worldwide olive oil production (about 3 million tons) is mainly concentrated within the European Community, which registers about 2,3 million tonnes in 2013/2014, with a 58 percent increase compared to the previous harvest. Of this, Italy holds almost 20 percenr, counting about 1,123,330 hectares of olive-growing land and almost 900,000 farms.

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