Two speakers at the Food Expo workshop on exporting to the USA

At the Food Expo at the Metropolitan Expo Center in Athens last month, one of the workshops focused on Foreign Markets and How to Approach Them: USA. Nickolas Nicolaou of Loumidis Foods in New Jersey and Kostas Mastoras of Optima Foods and Titan Foods in New York discussed some important points for Greeks interested in exporting to the USA to consider.

Speakers at the Gastronomy and Tourism workshop

On April 3 at the Chania Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Crete, a workshop focused on gastronomy, tourism, and branding featured welcoming remarks from the Chamber’s president, Ioannis Margaronis, followed by discussions by food editor Harry Tzanis of and brand strategist Dimosthenis Broussalis of Dasc Branding.

Alexandra Devarenne (face only)

American olive oil expert Alexandra Kicenik Devarenne spoke with me on a recent visit to Greece. Suggesting “Greek olive oil hasn’t made the mark it deserves in the US market,” she discussed its status in the USA -- surprisingly “underappreciated” and mostly in an “ethnic niche” – and shared ideas about breaking into the American market.

Alexandra Devarenne holding a blue olive oil tasting glass

On March 23, a free event in Athens organized by the Society of Olive and Olive Oil Products of Certified Quality (EL3P) will focus on "Quality as a Factor in the Economic Value of Olive Products." Alexandra Devarenne, co-founder of the Extra Virgin Alliance (EVA), will be the keynote speaker. She explained the goals of EVA on a recent visit to Greece. 

News and Information for Producers

To Consider

Is your extra virgin olive oil available in the USA, Great Britain, Canada, and/or Australia, either online or in stores? If so, please let me know (by email to or via Facebook message) where and how it is available there. I sometimes receive queries about where people can buy Greek EVOO and don't have a complete answer. If I receive enough replies, I can publish a list, which I can then update as needed.

Is your company on Greek Liquid Gold's Olive Oil Companies' Website Links page? If not, you can email to request a free listing of your company name with a website link if you produce certified Greek extra virgin olive oil that is bottled and branded in Greece, and you have an English-language website. (Please include a one or two word company name and the link to the English home page with such a request.)

Do you like what you see here and want this website to continue to flourish? Read here about supporting Greek Liquid Gold's efforts to promote the high quality and health benefits of Greek extra virgin olive oil with advertisements on this site starting at just 20 euros + VAT for one month, or by hiring Greek Liquid Gold writer, editor, and creator Dr. Lisa Radinovsky to help with English-language writing and/or editing for your company's website or other promotional materials.

News Articles and Announcements for Greek Producers (mostly articles and events in Greek)

Is California ripe for expansion of olive oil production?

This article (in English) seems to have nothing to do with Greece, but its points about the state of the US olive oil market might be worth considering. Clearly, Americans need to be convinced both that olive oil is worth buying, and that Greek extra virgin olive oil is authentic and high quality.

Νέα αγορά 10 χιλιάδων τόνων ανοίγει η τυποποίηση ελαιολάδου στην εστίαση

Here is some important information about the new law about single-use bottled and branded olive oil that will be required on Greek restaurant tables starting in January. It is hoped that this change will bring more worldwide attention to Greek olive oil brands, as well as offering more opportunities for branded olive oil sales in Greece.

Προοπτικές του Αγροτικού Τομέα στη Μεσσηνία 2017

The Captain Vasilis and Carmen Konstantakopoulos Foundation is sponsoring its annual open conference on "Perspectives on the Agricultural Sector in Messenia 2017" on Monday, November 27 at 5 p.m. in Kalamata.

Ένα βιβλίο για το μέλλον της ελαιοκομίας

This is the speech of the Honorary Professor of Arboriculture - Olive Oil of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki at the presentation of the new “Olive Encyclopedia: The olive oil” (a Greek book) in Thessaloniki, which explains why he thinks the book will be useful to anyone interested in olive oil.

Χρηματοδοτικά Εργαλεία, Επενδυτικές Δυνατότητες & Προωθητικές Ευκαιρίες στον Ελαιοκομικό Τομέα

At 5 pm on Thursday at the Athens Chamber of Commerce, Φίλαιος / Filaios Friends of Olive Oil has organized an event focused on Financial Tools, Investment Opportunities & Promotional Opportunities in the Olive Sector. World Olive Oil days' events and the Kotinos Olive Oil Competition will also be discussed. For more information, see the detailed press release linked above (where this is mentioned second), and please call 2103238856 to indicate your intention to attend.

Παγκοσμια Ημερα Ελαιοκομιας 2017: Πρόγραμμα εκδηλώσεων στα Χανιά την 15 Νοεμβρίου 2017

This is a full description of the the World Olive Day events planned for Chania, Crete on November 15, starting at 9:30 in the morning at the Mediterranean Agronomic Center of Chania (MAICh).

Εγκυκλοπαίδεια Ελαιοκομίας: Το ελαιόλαδο - Παρουσίαση βιβλίου

The new “Olive Encyclopedia: The olive oil” (in Greek) was presented to the public in Thessaloniki recently; it will also be presented in Athens on November 20. See the article for more information about this 700 page book that provides a wide range of useful knowledge for everyone involved with olive oil.

Εκδηλώσεις για την Παγκόσμια Ημέρα Ελιάς

The International Olive Council has accepted the World Olive Day events proposal by the Association of Cretan Olive Municipalities in cooperation with the Region of Crete, MAICh, and the Olive Institute. The article describes events planned in Crete November 15-30.

Olive Challenge Διαγωνισμος Καινοτομιας Και Επιχειρηματικοτητας Δελτιο Τυπου

Filaios, the Association of Friends of Olive Oil, has announced the first Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition in the Greek olive oil sector, with the goal of the development and upgrading of the olive sector through the introduction of innovation, sustainable development, and innovative entrepreneurship. More information is available here.

Εσπερίδα "Το ελαιόλαδο στη μαζική εστίαση"

In this evening program in Athens on November 15, opening World Olive Days events, speakers will discuss the legislative framework for the use of olive oil in restaurants and catering, the importance of olive oil in the Greek Mediterranean diet, the challenges and opportunities for promoting olive oil, the role of olive oil in gastronomy, and the benefits of branded olive oil. See the program here.

Olive Oil Taster, an emerging career in China

Very interesting perspective of one of China's first olive oil tasters: news from an emerging market.

Σε σφραγισμένη, μη επαναγεμιζόμενη συσκυασία το ελαιόλαδο στην εστίαση

The Association of Cretan Olive Municipalities (SEDIK) approvingly reproduces SEVITEL's press release about the new law requiring the use of bottled and branded olive oil on restaurant tables starting in January. Some details are clarified here.

European shopper trends: health, organic, vegetarian

This is not exactly about olive oil, but Europeans' interest in healthy organic vegetarian foods is relevant to olive oil producers and exporters. A “large proportion” of European shoppers are buying “healthy”, organic, vegetarian and free-from foods, new research from IRI reveals.

Εργαστήριο (workshop) για το εξαγωγικό εμπόριο στην βαλκανική

This workshop on the export trade in the Balkans will take place in Thessaloniki on November 9, at the annual Panhellenic Conference on the Development of Greek Agriculture, a conference for the agri-food sector organized annually by GAIA Epicheirein since 2014.

Η Specialty Food Association στην Ελλάδα διαμέσου του Τμήματος TradeUSA

The Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce and the Specialty Food Association (SFA) will develop a 3-year exclusive partnership for Greece that will include education and a commercial interconnection.

Too much procrastination

Urging Greeks to work together to stop bulk olive oil sales to Italy (for example), Alexis Papachelas argues, "Our objective, at the end of the day, should not be to get a slice of an already small cake, but to make that cake bigger." [He does not say to help Greek Liquid Gold help you make the cake bigger, but I do.]

Απειλή για καλλιέργειες από το βακτήριο “Ξυλέλλα”

Following an educational day in Crete about Xylella fastidiosa, which has not been found in Greece but has destroyed olive trees in other European countries, SEDIK reprints an article from Chaniotika Nea with links to information about the bacterium.

Food Leaders Take Notice: How Millennials Are Changing The Way We Eat

Not specifically about olive oil, but discussing trends it may be useful to keep in mind.

Διακίνηση και διάθεση ελαιολάδου και σπορέλαιων

This article describes the rules for the trading, marketing, distribution, and sale of olive oils and seed oils.

Aυξάνεται συνεχώς η καλλιέργεια της Ελιάς Καλαμών σε ΗΠΑ, Αυστραλία, Πακιστάν και Κίνα

This article about the growing of Kalamata olive trees in other countries, and various popular activities, classes, and stores organized around olive estates, seems meant to inspire Greek olive growers to more creatively use their land and products as well.

UK Food Safety Concerns Remain Despite New Inspections Framework

Businesses exporting to the United Kingdom may want to consider changes likely to be made due to Brexit.

Sustainable Management of Olive Groves Can Tackle Effects of Climate Change

Advice for olive farmers from a Greek professor working in Italy, plus a discussion of experiments underway and climate change's possible effect on olive growing.

‘Oleum’ Project Seeks Better Solutions to Protect Olive Oil Authenticity

As Ylenia Granitto explains in Olive Oil Times, "Part of Europe's Horizon 2020 research and innovation program is an ambitious plan to find common approaches and analytical tools to check the quality and authenticity of olive oil."

4ο πανελλήνιο συνέδριο για την ανάπτυξη της ελληνικής γεωργίας

The 4th Panhellenic Congress about the Development of Greek Agriculture will be held November 9-10 in Thessaloniki. The press release linked above provides an overview; for more information, see also the conference website (all in Greek).

Taiwan Study Adds Little to Differentiation Measures, IOC Says

"As Taiwan's FDA targets esters in their efforts to aid in differentiation, the International Olive Council said a recent study contributes little to the cause." Note: I wonder if the IOC's conclusion is debatable. The ability to determine whether olive oils have been refined should be advantageous to Greek producers of EVOO.

Organic food: new rules for EU label agreed

"New rules to increase consumer trust in organic foodstuffs and unleash the sector′s potential for growth were informally agreed with Council′ negotiators on June 29," but not yet approved. If approved, they will apply from July 1, 2020.

Επιχειρηματικός Οδηγός για την Ιαπωνία

The Greek Embassy in Tokyo has set up an e-portal for Greek businesses in Japan, one of the largest olive oil importers. It provides a useful online guide with business and commercial data and information necessary for exporters to Japan. In addition to the portal itself, this article provides a fairly detailed overview of it, in Greek.

Εως 400 ευρώ/χρόνο για το 'ελληνικό σήμα'

The Government Gazette published the Joint Ministerial Decisions setting out the conditions and annual fee for the awarding of the Hellenic Sign to extra virgin and virgin olive oil and table olives.

Άνοιγμα σε νέα μέλη για τη Φίλαιος

For Greeks who use, produce, believe in, and/or care about olive oil (since this is all in Greek): you can become a member of Filaios, the Association of Friends of Olive Oil. More info here.

Ελαιόλαδο από αιωνόβιες Ελιές παράγεται και προωθείται στην Ιταλία!

Very interesting article about extra virgin olive oil in individual dose packages for pregnant women, children, and athletes, now produced from centuries-old organic olive trees in Apulia, Italy; Dr. Nikos Michelakis suggests trying the same thing with some Greek olive trees.

Προδημοσίευση πρόσκλησης για τα "Σχέδια Βελτίωσης"

This is a press release about the preliminary announcement of a call for improvement plans for an investment program from the Rural Development Program.

Tο στο συμπόσιο "Made in Greece"

This informative article follows up on a May 31 symposium in Athens about the development of a "Made in Greece" brand and how it might work and help producers and exporters.

Olive Oil, a market in the process of consolidation in Russia

Useful notes for those interested in considering the Russian market, where Spain and Italy dominate.

Εξαπάτηση επιχειρήσεων Κρητικού Ελαιολάδου: Συμβουλές από το Επιμελητήριο Ηρακλείου

Greek olive oil producers are warned to beware of fraudulent orders for exports.

Ευκαιρίες επιδότησης έως και 90% στις επενδύσεις μεταποίησης του ελαιοκομικού τομέα

Information (in Greek) about subsidies for investments in olive oil processing.

Price rises and private label drive up sales of olive oil across Europe - IRI data

A discussion of olive oil prices, sales, and trends in several European countries from 2015 to the present.

Η ποιότητα δίνει οικονομική αξία σε ελαιόλαδο και επιτραπέζιες ελιές

This is a press release about an event in Athens that featured American expert Alexandra Devarenne as well as a number of speakers from the Greek olive oil world.

Japanese Consumers seek for the Healthy qualities of Olive Oil

Useful information about what Japanese consumers are looking for in olive oil

New portal helps EU agri-food sector promote products overseas

"The new agri-food promotion portal ... is ... designed to be a one-stop-shop for organisations to find out how to get EU funding for their promotion programmes, search for potential programme partners and find useful information on entering new export markets." This is the European Commission link discussed in the article:

The price, a decisive factor for the US consumer when it comes to buying olive oil

Useful information for those interested in the American olive oil market.