June 21, 2001
Extra Virgin Olive
Oil, a product of The Union of Agricultural Cooperatives of
Sitia, Crete, Greece achieved a very important distinction. It
was unanimously awarded first prize in the
International Olive Oil competition organized by the
International Council of Olive Oil.
This official competition aims at improving
the position of olive oil with superior organic characteristics,
as well as at assisting consumers to choose on the basis of
The award was presented by the Executive
Director of the International Council of Olive Oil, Dr. Fausto
Luchetti at a special ceremony, which took place at Aix-en-Prοvence,
France, on June 13, 2001.
Mr. Manolis Vakondios, the President of
Sitia Coop, who received the award, made the following
statement: We derive great pride from this prestigious
International award, because it recognizes the efforts of olive
oil producers who invest in quality as well as the people of the
Sitia Cooperative. It gratifies us in that it recognizes the
superiority and potential of Sitia olive oil and Greek olive oil
The competition was held in Madrid in May
of this year with numerous participants from olive oil producing
countries (Spain, Italy, Portugal, Tunisia and France). The
samples were rated by an international panel of expert tasters
who employed the blind tasting method.
It is worth noting that Greece produces
almost exclusively premium quality olive oil (85 90% of its
olive oil production is extra virgin whereas none of the other
olive oil producing countries exceeds 50 60%).
Greek olive oil is world renowned and
sought after because of its organic characteristics, its
superior taste and aroma and its invaluable contribution to
health and nutrition.