`Council Launches Seminar Series on Cultivation and Olive Oil Quality


Council Launches Seminar Series on Cultivation and Olive Oil Quality

Dec. 15, 2011
By Julie Butler

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In the hopes of spark­ing wider debate, the Inter­na­tional Olive Coun­cil is this week host­ing a sem­i­nar on olive cul­ti­va­tion and olive oil qual­ity issues.

The first of what are to be reg­u­lar meet­ings on per­ti­nent issues, the five-day sem­i­nar at the IOC’s Madrid head­quar­ters has attracted 84 par­tic­i­pants from 14 of the 17 IOC mem­ber coun­tries and began on Mon­day with lec­tures on changes in olive grow­ing and their impli­ca­tions for sus­tain­able devel­op­ment.

In addi­tion to look­ing at end prod­uct qual­ity, speak­ers exam­ined what could be done to increase inher­ent poten­tial deter­mined by genetic fac­tors. Lec­ture top­ics included World Olive Germplasm Bank” and Genetic improve­ment.”

Irri­ga­tion and fer­til­i­sa­tion; soil man­age­ment; sus­tain­able olive pest and dis­ease con­trol; prun­ing; mech­a­nised har­vest­ing; hedgerow plant­ing lay­outs; tri­als under­way in Apu­lia, Sicily and Tunisia; and orchard pro­duc­tiv­ity are also among the top­ics being cov­ered by the 30 lec­tur­ers selected by the Exec­u­tive Sec­re­tariat from Spain, Italy and Tunisia.

Under the head­ing The olive oil value chain,” pre­sen­ta­tions on Thurs­day and Fri­day are expected to include an inter-coun­try com­par­i­son of pro­duc­tion costs, and technical/economic analy­sis of new olive grow­ing mod­els and olive oil mills.

The sem­i­nar is due to close on Fri­day with a panel dis­cus­sion fea­tur­ing: Monji Msallem, researcher, Insti­tut de l’O­livier (Tunisia); Joan Tous Martí (Spain); and Luis Rallo Romero, Agron­omy Depar­ta­ment of the Uni­ver­sity of Cór­doba (Spain). IOC Exec­u­tive Direc­tor Jean-Louis Bar­jol will give a clos­ing address.


Reg­u­lar sem­i­nars on top­i­cal themes

In a state­ment, the IOC said such inter­na­tional sem­i­nars were intended to broad­cast research find­ings, stim­u­late debate and trans­fer knowl­edge and exper­tise.

The IOC’s Exec­u­tive seeks inspi­ra­tion from con­tem­po­rary issues or sug­ges­tions from other par­ties, and will also ask par­tic­i­pants in this week’s sem­i­nar to sug­gest future sub­jects.

As for dis­sem­i­nat­ing the sem­i­nar infor­ma­tion, the IOC said that in future it plans to keep pri­vate stake­hold­ers bet­ter informed by chan­nelling infor­ma­tion to the mem­bers of the joint IOC/pri­vate-sec­tor Advi­sory Com­mit­tee on Olive Oil and Table Olives.”

New task force

The IOC also announced that it plans to set up a sci­en­tific task force in 2012, to take stock of ongo­ing olive and olive oil research and to pro­pose top­ics to the IOC that would war­rant hold­ing an inter­na­tional sem­i­nar or arrang­ing another type of activ­ity.

The plan is to cre­ate an ad hoc expert team of 3 to 4 peo­ple at the most on each of the top­ics iden­ti­fied by the sci­en­tific task force. The brief of this team will be to deter­mine the spe­cific con­tent of the pro­posed activ­ity,” it said.

To see details of the speak­ers and top­ics from this week’s sem­i­nar, see the pro­gramme here.

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