`Biolea and Astarti Win Quality Awards - Olive Oil Times

Biolea and Astarti Win Quality Awards

Jun. 28, 2011
Costas Vasilopoulos

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The 4th annual cer­e­mony of the Gastronome” Quality Awards was held on June 1st at the Benaki Museum, Athens. The Gastronome”, one of the the most impor­tant culi­nary pub­li­ca­tions in Greece, rewarded Greek pro­duc­ers, proces­sors and traders of foods with supe­rior qual­ity and nutri­tional value.

The cer­e­mony was attended by gov­ern­ment offi­cials, edu­ca­tional insti­tute rep­re­sen­ta­tives, busi­ness­men and culi­nary jour­nal­ists. The two olive oil pro­duc­ers pre­sented with the qual­ity award for their excep­tional prod­ucts were Biolea and Astarti.

Dr. Kostas Chartzoulakis, Director of the Institute for Olive Tree & Subtropical Plants of Chania pre­sent­ing the gas­tron­o­mist award to Biolea’s direc­tor, G. Dimitriadis.

Biolea is a unique olive oil mill at Kolymbari, near Chania, Crete. It pro­duces only organic olive oil com­bin­ing tra­di­tion with mod­ern tech­nol­ogy. The owner, George Dimitriadis, has declined using typ­i­cal pro­duc­ing meth­ods uti­liz­ing a decanter where warm water is added; instead, he has built a tra­di­tional-look­ing but mod­ern oil pro­duc­ing sys­tem using old mill­stones. The gran­ite mill­stones are cov­ered with an impres­sive glass dome for bet­ter hygiene and, since the oil is pro­duced with mechan­i­cal pres­sure only, it keeps more of its antiox­i­dant char­ac­ter­is­tics.

The net result is an excep­tional olive juice, which is mainly exported to the best del­i­catessen stores and restau­rants world­wide. As George Dimitriadis said at the awards cer­e­mony: We believe that olive oil can find its way as a dif­fer­en­ti­ated prod­uct, because we have the tra­di­tion and the her­itage. It is some­thing that mod­ern mar­ket­ing can­not offer”.

Astarti organic olive oil is made of olive dru­pes from the fam­ily olive groves in the north­ern region of Kythera. The spe­cial treat­ment of the trees and the cli­mate of the island are cred­ited for the fine qual­ity of the oil. The olive groves, of the renowned Koroneiki vari­ety, are dry cul­ti­vated and incor­po­rated into the organic farm­ing pro­gram in accor­dance with the E.C. 2092/91 reg­u­la­tion for organic farm­ing and the cul­ti­va­tion and final prod­ucts are cer­ti­fied by DIO” (Certification & Inspection Organisation for Organic Products).

Charis Tzortzopoulos, the owner of the mill, spoke at the awards cer­e­mony about young farm­ers: I ded­i­cate the prize to young peo­ple who work on the soil with vision, and, believe me, there are a lot of them: don’t give up.”

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