Few Greek Olive Oils Shine at 2016 NYIOOC

While twenty took awards at the 2016 New York International Olive Oil Competition, the success rate of Greek olive oils fell far behind the other major producing countries.

NYIOOC 2016 panel leader Konstantinos Liris (left) with Dino with Diamantis Pierrakos, producers of award-winning Laconiko olive oils and NYIOOC president Curtis Cord at the New York International Olive Oil Competition awards reception Thursday night in New York (Photo: NYIOOC)
Apr. 16, 2016
By Hannah Howard
NYIOOC 2016 panel leader Konstantinos Liris (left) with Dino with Diamantis Pierrakos, producers of award-winning Laconiko olive oils and NYIOOC president Curtis Cord at the New York International Olive Oil Competition awards reception Thursday night in New York (Photo: NYIOOC)

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Twenty olive oils from Greece have been awarded Best in the World” at the 2016 New York International Olive Oil Competition (NYIOOC). Greece sub­mit­ted 180 oils to the NYIOOC, more than any other coun­try besides Italy, who entered 184.

The high num­ber of con­tenders is indeed a sign that Greek pro­duc­ers are striv­ing for qual­ity and to dis­tin­guish their brands in the mar­ket­place. Yet only 11 per­cent of those took home awards, com­pared to last year’s 21 per­cent, and Italy’s 59 per­cent.

Their suc­cess rate, which fell from 22% last year to just 11% this time, will no doubt lead many to take a hard look at their pro­duc­tion processes.- Curtis Cord, NYIOOC pres­i­dent

We Greeks are stub­born,” said a Greek olive oil pro­ducer who attended the press event and wished to remain anony­mous. Many need to change their ways to improve the qual­ity of their oil, but we are con­vinced we are already the best. Ego gets in the way.”
See Also: The Best Greek Olive Oils for 2016
Last year (at the 2015 NYIOOC) we thought we were see­ing a clear upward trend when 22 per­cent of the Greek brands were awarded — a promis­ing improve­ment from the 15 per­cent rate of suc­cess the year before,” said Curtis Cord, the NYIOOC pres­i­dent. This year’s dis­ap­point­ing show­ing will no doubt lead many to take a hard look at their pro­duc­tion processes.”

Greek oils shine on store shelves with inno­v­a­tive brand­ing and strik­ing pack­ag­ing designs. And twenty olive oils wowed the panel of 15 expert judges with the qual­ity of the juice inside the bot­tles. Two olive oils from Greece were awarded Best in class, eight received Gold awards and ten Silver.

Papadopoulos Olive Oil took home a Gold and a Silver award for their Mythocia Omphacium and Mythocia Omphacium Organic.

One of those sil­ver awards went to Oliorama Exclusive Bio, an early-har­vested oil from Ancient Olympia. Maria Spiliakopoulou, who pro­duces Oliorama, was over­come with joy upon hear­ing the news of her win at the press con­fer­ence. It’s a very, very highly esteemed com­pe­ti­tion,” she said. Whoever wins, wins pres­tige.” She’s been mak­ing olive oil for thirty years. Every sin­gle part of the process has to be per­fect.”

We’re thrilled,” said Dino Pierrakos, who took home a Silver award for his family’s Laconiko Olio Nuovo for the third year in a row. Perfected over four gen­er­a­tions, his sin­gle estate Koroneiki olives are hand­picked in Trinisa, Laconia, off the sandy beaches of south­ern Greece. Laconiko is unfil­tered; The sed­i­ment sinks as the oil trav­els across the Atlantic,” he said.

Argali, a del­i­cate Koroneiki from Greece, was among the Best in Class. Argali’s organic, highly sus­tain­able approach ensures the pro­tec­tion of nat­ural resources. They don’t even irri­gate their trees.

For the full list of win­ners, visit bestoliveoils.org.

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