The European Commission in Brussels have allocated €8 million to the promotion of Spanish olive oil throughout the European union and other markets around the world.

Twenty-two food related projects have been selected to receive a share in a €36 million campaign to promote and publicize the quality of European food products. Of the twenty two recipients, three are Spanish olive oil related, with two programs proposed by the Interprofesional del Aceite de Oliva Español and one by the Interprofesional de la Aceituna de Mesa being awarded financial support. All three of the projects will be carried out over a three year period.

The Interprofesional del Aceite de Oliva Español will focus its promotion of Spanish olive oil on two differing markets, one of which will involve campaigns in India and Southeast Asia and will cost nearly €5 million over the three-year period with the EU providing almost €2.5 million of this total.

The second project will take place closer to home with a €6 million campaign aimed at the Spanish market. The Interaceituna campaign will have a more European based approach, with a focus on Spanish, French and UK markets, of which half of the budget will be funded by the EU.

Of the other projects selected for funding, 16 will focus on promotion within the EU and the remaining six in other countries around the world. The initiative has been taking place since 2000 and spends a maximum of €50 million on promotion of European foods internally and in international markets annually. This year €36 million has been promised, which will fund around 50 percent of each of the chosen programs.

The selection process for the projects receiving funding from the European Commission requires that the programs ideally be carried out over a number of years and have significant impact on their target markets. The assistance is usually awarded to professional organizations that represent agricultural products or approaches to agriculture, such as organic farming.

The promotional campaigns should highlight quality, nutritional value and safety of EU farm products and foods and draw attention to the advantages of such products.

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