«2020 has registered a record surge in world consumption of olive oil, which rose to 3.1 billion kilos (Coldiretti analysis on data from the International Olive Council). Exports from our country (a substantial part of national production, ed) in the last 5 years they have risen from 40 to 62 million euros, with an increase of 55% (analysis by Centro Studi Italia Olivicola). And in Italy, 9 out of 10 families consume extra virgin olive oil every day with increasing attention to quality“. It is the statistical photograph of the olive world and its market in times of pandemic that Red shrimp shot at the beginning of the 2021 Italian Oils Guide in which they are reviewed 982 extra virgin olive oils from 544 companies.
The search for the excellence of our green gold with undisputed properties is part of a context of younger consumers who insist on made in Italy: the attention to quality and the desire not to be satisfied with discount oils can also be seen from some data of Assitol, Italian association of the oil industry. According to a 2020 report: not only the average consumer bought 9% more olive oil than the previous year (reaching 11.5 liters per capita) but those under 40 are more interested in knowing where the oil they buy comes from and often buying it from small or medium-sized farmers. They read the labels, they begin to notice the territorial differences and those between monoculture and blend. They want DOP and IGP. The culture of the era is strengthening, also for its decisive role in the Mediterranean diet, and for the versatility in the kitchen and the ease of pairing with food. Today, consumers are asking for more information on various fields: from supply chains, to methods for using it in the kitchen and storing it properly.
These figures make you smile even if they clash with production decreased by 30% compared to 2019 (Ismea data), in line with world availability that fell by 7% (Assitol). In Italy a descent concerning above all the south and Puglia, leader among the producing regions. A smaller quantity, however, corresponds to a higher value of our oils “which – we read in the Guide – benefited from excellent flowering and favorable weather conditions”. Gambero Rosso evaluates the excellences with the number of leaves assigned in the pages of the brochure (maximum of 3). But there are also special prizes awarded to companies that have distinguished themselves for some particular aspect of production. Award winning oils, mills, olive growers, structures etc. In this article we have collected the realities that have received the 2021 special awards.
June 3, 2021 | 07:47 (©) REPRODUCTION RESERVED