Record Year for Turkish Olive Oils at World Competition

With 18 Golds and 10 Silvers, Turkish producers walked away with more awards at the world's most prestigious olive oil quality competition this year than ever before.

Gizem Çetintürk, co-owner of Eliada Gida Tarim Kozmetik Ithalat Ihracat.
By Lisa Anderson
May. 26, 2020 12:46 UTC
Gizem Çetintürk, co-owner of Eliada Gida Tarim Kozmetik Ithalat Ihracat.

Turkish pro­duc­ers had their best year yet at the 2020 NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition, earn­ing 28 awards.

Producers from the world’s fifth-largest olive oil pro­duc­ing coun­try won a record-high 18 Gold Awards – as many Turkish Golds as in the four pre­vi­ous con­tests com­bined – and 10 Silver Awards.

It is an honor to be one of the many win­ning pro­duc­ers from Turkey, and we are excited to see the grow­ing recog­ni­tion of Turkish olive oil on the world stage.- Merve Doran, owner of Oleamea

The country’s two biggest win­ners, the Granpa and Mavras Zeytincilik brands, were among those that entered the com­pe­ti­tion for the first time.

See Also:The Best Olive Oils From Turkey

Müge Aşkın is the sales man­ager of the Tokuç Group, which pro­duces Granpa olive oils. The Istanbul-based com­pany earned two Gold Awards for medium Trilye oils and a Silver for a del­i­cate Trilye.

Aşkın told Olive Oil Times that Granpa started pro­duc­ing olive oil in 2018, hav­ing saved olive trees from the country’s min­ing areas and moved them to their 17,000-tree olive grove.

Oleamea’s olive groves in Turkey’s Aegean region. Photo cour­tesy of Merve Doran

She said it was evi­dent that Turkish pro­duc­ers were becom­ing increas­ingly moti­vated to par­tic­i­pate in inter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tions. Aşkın added that since news of Granpa’s excel­lent results at the NYIOOC had got­ten out, the com­pany has received calls from exist­ing and prospec­tive cus­tomers.

The NYIOOC will be our top pri­or­ity next year,” she said.

The other big win­ner this year was the Mavras Olive Oil Company, which won two Golds and one Silver Award for their Edremit oils.

This is the first time we are tak­ing part in the NYIOOC,” CEO Melike As told Olive Oil Times. Of course, we are very happy to win two Golds and one Silver Award for olive oils that were extracted from our dif­fer­ent groves.”

She attrib­uted the vic­tory to their hands-on man­age­ment dur­ing the pro­duc­tion process and the com­pa­ny’s new state-of-the-art mill, sit­u­ated near the groves on the slopes of Mount İda.

Several hun­dred miles south of Mount İda, Gizem Çetintürk, the co-owner of Eliada Gida Tarim Kozmetik Ithalat Ihracat, was yet another first-time entrant cel­e­brat­ing a big win at the NYIOOC.

She said receiv­ing a Silver Award for the com­pa­ny’s del­i­cate Arbosana in its first year of pro­duc­tion was very mean­ing­ful for the fledg­ling com­pany.

Harvesting olives in Turkey’s south­west­ern Aegean region. Photo cour­tesy of Gizem Çetintürk.

It’s our first oil in the first year of pro­duc­tion, so it’s a great feel­ing to be awarded at the NYIOOC and a great start that shows us we are going in the right direc­tion,” Çetintürk told Olive Oil Times.

She added that Eliada’s goal is to be a sought-after and trusted brand for health-con­scious con­sumers and win­ning awards from the NYIOOC was a big step in the right direc­tion for them.

Çetintürk attrib­uted the company’s vic­tory to their pas­sion and deter­mi­na­tion.

Fellow Aegean area pro­duc­ers, Genius Olive Oil were also among the first time entrants and win­ners at the 2020 NYIOOC. The Manisa-based com­pany earned a Gold Award for its medium Arbequina.


Company co-owner Tarkan Karakaya told Olive Oil Times that he was very proud of being awarded at the NYIOOC, adding that their pur­suit of per­fec­tion had brought them this great suc­cess.

Meanwhile, Hiç founder Duygu Elakdar cred­ited her com­pa­ny’s Silver Award-win­ning organic medium Ayvalik to the con­sis­tency of the product’s fla­vor as well as to their sin­gle-estate organic olive for­est. She added that invest­ing in a new mill had allowed the com­pany to har­vest and trans­form their olives more quickly, bet­ter pre­serv­ing their aro­mas and fla­vors.

We are proud to be the pio­neers of our region by achiev­ing this award,” Elakdar said. It means a lot because we are the biggest organic-cer­ti­fied olive for­est in Urla.”

Harvesting the olives behind the Silver Award-win­ning Hiç Organic Ayvalik. Photo cour­tesy of Nancy DePiano.

Merve Doran, the owner of the another vic­to­ri­ous south­west­ern pro­ducer, Oleamea, said her com­pany was also very proud of receiv­ing a Gold and a Silver Award for their organic medium Memeciks at the com­pe­ti­tion.

It is an honor to be one of the many win­ning pro­duc­ers from Turkey, and we are excited to see the grow­ing recog­ni­tion of Turkish olive oil on the world stage,” Doran said.

Although envi­ron­men­tal and cur­rent global con­di­tions con­tinue to pose sig­nif­i­cant chal­lenges, we con­tinue to strive for con­tin­u­ous qual­ity improve­ment and adapt our model where pos­si­ble,” she added.

Oleamea sources their olives from organic pro­duc­ers in the country’s Aegean region.

Just south of the Aegean region, in Fethiye, the pro­ducer of the Sidyma brand earned a Gold Award for their medium blend.

We are very proud of hav­ing received a Gold Award at the NYIOOC this year,” the company’s man­ag­ing direc­tor Sergül Yücekök said. We have worked tire­lessly to achieve a truly unique olive oil and are delighted to be shar­ing our achieve­ment with our cus­tomers and col­leagues.

Yücekök added that part of what makes Sidyma stand out is its extra­or­di­nar­ily high lev­els of polyphe­nols and said he believes that the com­pa­ny’s suc­cess comes from the research and know-how that is put into their olive oil pro­duc­tion.


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