Olive oil producers in Madrid received Protected Designation of Origin certification from the European Union earlier this month.
After four years of work by local officials, qualifying producers can begin to label their extra virgin olive oil with the official PDO certificate starting April 24th.
“We have achieved something good by showing the European Union that this is a real project with a future that respects the environment,” said Rafael Gómez, the president of the PDO.See Also:Researchers Use AI to Identify EVOO Provenance
“Now, when people buy this olive oil, they are going to know it’s of good quality, with some of its own characteristics and with a respectful production process,” he added.
In the autonomous community of Madrid, there are about 4,500 growers, 18 mills and over 20,000 hectares of olive groves, producing between 3.7 and 6.0 million liters of olive oil annually.
The main cultivation areas are in Campiña, Suroccidental and Las Vegas regions, southeast of the capital.
‘Aceite de Madrid’ PDO oils will be produced primarily from Manzanilla, Castellana and Cornicabra olives. “This is what allows us to obtain sensory profiles that make this oil unique,” said Esther Alonso, the director of the PDO.
Gómez added that Madrid PDO extra virgin olive oil is spicy, green and bitter. He said it has a potent aroma as well.
Isabel Díaz Ayuso, president of the Community of Madrid, congratulated the farmers and organizers who sent in the PDO application and lobbied Brussels for its inclusion in the E.U.’s Register of Protected Designations of Origin and Geographical Indications.
“The Madrid countryside is in luck,” she tweeted. “The European Union certifies the Denomination of Origin of Madrid olive oil. Thanks to the farmers, mills and the entire oil sector. Together we have made it possible.”
Spain boasts 32 extra virgin olive oils with a Protected Designation of Origin and Protected Geographical Indication status.
The producers behind the Aceite Villuercas Ibores Jara in Extremadura, which applied for PDO status in February 2022, will hope they are next in line to become Spain’s 33rd olive oil with protected status.