Volume 7 Issue 2
|2004 Fancy Food Show||Events|
|Comments from the Internet||Briefs|
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2004 Winter Fancy Food Show Report
"Lo Carb" seemed to be the mantra at this year's NASFT food show in San Francisco. The Atkins and Zone diets are affecting the nation's food preferences and marketers are quickly changing labels and claims to suit. Santa Barbara Olive Oil booth workers said they were surprised to find out that even olives were low carbohydrate, so were duly informing attendees.
Every year California olive oil producers buy booth space to show their newest products to potential wholesalers, distributors and retailers. A savvy deal made at the show can put a small food company on the map. Retailers who want novel products and to follow the latest consumer fads scrutinize product segments, taste, packaging and of course price. The three day show can be exhausting for buyers and sellers. Attendees need to bring a cast iron stomach and plenty of Maalox. One thousand exhibitors showed over 50,000 products.
This year there was a huge upsurge in premium olive oils from around the world. There is usually a good number of olive oil companies represented in the Italian and Spanish national pavilions but this year there were many domestic importers who were showing off a premium oil from their "grandfather's home town in the old country". One after another described how producers of high quality oil in Greece, Turkey, and Spain are tired of selling their carefully tended and pressed oil to the large Italian blenders at commodity prices. They were hungry for any way to get these excellent small batch oils into the US retail chain.
Many small French producers were present, including several from the A.O.C. Ballee des Baux de Provence. An oil from that area won an IOOC Mario Solas award last year.
While last year saw one Australian producer, this year there were many. Gwydir Grove offered an extra virgin olive oil made with native Australian bush herbs. Franklin River Extra Virgin olive oil claimed acidity of .18% and gold medals in local competition.
An importer selling an excellent Southern Italian oil attributed its intense taste to an unusual variety: Brocanica, and the dry weather which hit Europe last year. Single estate and single varietal oils were common this year. Other interesting single varietal oils were Picual, Salonesque, Aglandau, Athenolia, Koroneiki, Lechin and Nocellara del Belce
O Olive Oil had their stylish labeling displayed and were promoting the antioxidants in their ruby grapefruit flavored olive oil.
Fruit oil producers were presented with a labeling dilemma this year. Oil made by crushing the fruit with olives cannot be called olive oil according to the world's largest oil standards body, the IOOC. Producers who are members of the California Olive Oil Council (COOC) have signed an agreement to support the IOOC rules. Technically, oil made from fresh lemons crushed with olives should be labeled "lemon fruit oil". An Italian importer had such an oil labeled "Extra Virgin Olive Oil from olives pressed with fresh lemons". He admitted that the same oil could not be labeled as olive oil anywhere in the EU but because the US does not support the IOOC, it was not illegal here.
To be labeled "olive oil", nothing can have been added to the oil. Several COOC members, including board members, displayed flavored oils which, while not claiming to be extra virgin, were labeled as olive oil. When COOC President Albert Katz was asked about this apparent infraction, he said that a more descriptive term than allowed by the IOOC was needed for this category.
Other labeling observations: bottles of California Garden Olive Oil were filled with olive oil from Spanish gardens according to the vendor. They didn't see the irony as California is not a legal appellation. Pending country of origin labeling rules may pressure some vendors with California in their name to think about using a California oil.
A "Kalamata olive oil" was confusingly labeled as product of Italy. When the importer was asked if it was from the Kalamata area of Greece or made from Kalamata variety olives they said neither; it was just a "style" of oil!
Herb flavored oils were abundant as usual. Wildly Delicious had a unique basil and garlic infused Turkish olive oil. Private Harvest had a large line of specialty dippers. Their latest is the Parmesan dipper. Some of their dippers are made with California olive oil from the Modesto area. Tulocay and Company, Inc. of Napa offered a Garlic Parmesan dipping oil with capers. Several vendors were showing similar cheese and olive oil products and the table olive vendors were promoting cheese stuffed olives to please the Atkins dieters.
Wine Country Kitchens offered tastes of a kettle roasted garlic olive oil. Owner John McIntosh described how they slow roast the garlic in a California Arbequina and Arbosana blend olive oil at 160 degrees F. for six hours. The slow roasting develops an intense flavor.
Pomegranate seemed to be the new "exotic" fruit flavor. Booths were handing out tastes of pomegranate drink mix, fruit smoothie mix, and cooking concentrate. LuLu's had an intense tasting pomegranate grilling glaze. Can a pomegranate olive oil be far off?
The continuing popularity of the martini is propelling olive sales. The Beefeater Gin booth was promoting their own olives. Table olive vendors were selling various martini olives and "dirty martini mix" - the brine from the olives.
B.R. Cohn was offering a California Certified Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil made from Mission and Manzanillo varieties grown in volcanic soil outside Sacramento. Owner Sharon Cohn explained that their winery's 130 year old Picholine trees produced only enough Estate extra virgin olive oil to sell through the store on their winery premises.
DaVero's economical but award winning Kitchen Blend is a mix of their estate olive oil with other less costly California extra virgin oils.
The Arbequina varietal was named on several vendor's labels. Bulk producer California Olive Ranch's large holdings are mostly Arbequina and their excellent and inexpensive oil is finding its way into many products. Head of Marketing Alan Greene shared space at the California Olive Oil Council booth with other members. He said that interest in the ranch's products have been high and that their scarcer Arbosana oil has nearly sold out. The company's 500 acres of olives go from tree to oil in less than 4 hours thanks to mechanized picking and a modern Pieralisi mill on the premises. Retail prices for a 500 ml or 17-oz bottle range from $9.95 to $12.95
Also in the COOC booth, Ryan MacDonnell of Round Pond has one of only two operating mills in Napa valley, a recently installed Pieralisi system with a stone crusher. The family owned company produces a premium Italian varietal oil which won a gold medal last year at the Los Angeles county fair, as well as a Spanish varietal, a blood orange and a Meyer Lemon olive oil.
Another COOC booth exhibitor, Chris Banthein of Le Colline di Santa Cruz related that their Frantoio, Leccino, Ascolano and Pendolino trees suffered from harsh weather at bloom time, reducing the fruit set which led to larger fruit that ripened early enough for a November 15 2003 harvest. She and partner Bruce Golino hope that the intensely fruity oil will lead to a repeat of last year's gold medal at the LA county fair.
Pacific Culinaria's Lemon Pepper, Roasted garlic and Tuscan herb olive oils were made from an interesting multinational blend of Spanish, Italian and California olive oils.
Napa Valley Naturals had a compelling product offer. A $1.50 donation for each bottle of Organic Reserve Cuvée Olive Oil sold has been earmarked for the Komen Foundation to help fight breast cancer.
Wackiest new olive oil packaging had to go to Sassafras. Their dipping oils were packed in bright colored triangle shaped bottles with primary color stoppers.
The Fancy Food Show staff have done an excellent job of educating the public about olive oil. A special section of the convention center was set aside for Focused Tastings®. This special tasting area offered Fancy Food show attendees a chance to compare products in several hot categories: specialty oils, dried fruit, nuts and bottled water.
The Focused Olive Oil Tasting section was made up of ninety four oils, most of which were olive oils although there were some unusual seed and nut oils; everything from pumpkin seed to macadamia nut and avocado oil. Fully two thirds of the olive oils were flavored with fruit, garlic or herbs in varying combinations and came from Spain, Sicily, Australia, France, Morocco, and just about every other olive bearing country.
Another special section of the show was reserved for Taste link, an audio guided tasting. For the San Francisco show the subject was olive oil. The audio guide took tasters through 12 specially chosen oils from around the world designed to demonstrate key qualities which the experts look for in a good oil. Peggy Knickerbocker gave the introduction on the audiotape and B.R. Cohn represented the California oils.
A 12 minute video "Olive Oil: A timeless Classic for Today's Consumer" was playing at a kiosk in the education area and is available for purchase from the NASFT education Department for $50.
The NASFT Fancy Food show is definitely the place to go to taste hundreds of olive oils from around the world, and for dessert, such delicacies as vegetarian caviar or 10 lbs of marzipan in the shape of a pig.
Copyright © April 06, 2008 The Olive Oil Source. All rights reserved.
Comments from the Internet
Linda Asks: Which kind of olive oil should I buy for deep frying French fries?
OOS responds: Use a less costly extra virgin or pure olive oil for frying. See Cooking
Carlos Asks: I am a Peruvian olive oil producer and I would like to know how I can get more information about you. I mean I need some information about taking part in some exhibitions
OOS responds: The only international exhibition we have in California is the Los Angeles county fair. Every year they rate oils from around the world. Contact them directly at Fairplex
Whiteorangetiger asks: I need to know what keeps oil on top of water.
OOS responds: oil is less dense than water, so it floats to the top.
Fred Asks: I was told that you can not graft an olive tree to any other type of tree such as apple, etc. Is this true?
OOS responds: It is difficult at times to even get different varieties of olives to graft to one another. I have never heard of grafting to other fruit trees. While it may be possible experimentally, it is certainly not used commercially.
Ed asks: My wife and I are building a home in Bonsall, CA just south and about 8 miles closer to the Ocean than Temecula. Is there an association in the Temecula/Bonsall/Fallbrook area that we might join or contact? What olives would you recommend for this area for oil? For table olives?
Frederick Asks: Do you know of anyone who would be willing to contract to install a modest olive oil producing orchard on our 25 acre property in the Santa Ynez Valley and help us find some one to manage it after the installation
OOS Responds: The California Olive Oil Council represents olive oil growers and retailers all over the state. There are fewer in the Riverside area but there has been talk of creating a local group of council members in the Santa Barbara area.
I would contact olive oil companies
in your area -
by county or call for
consultants. You might also contact
nurseries as they might have some good leads in your area. The
state's most modern olive oil mill was installed this fall in your area:
Figueroa Farms, LLC, they also do consulting and orchard management
Deirdre asks: I will be moving to Europe soon and I was wondering how to make Lemon Olive oil. I will have a press. I assume you just press the rind of the lemons with the olives. My question is how many lemon rind do I use to the amount of olives. Any information on this subject would be much appreciated.
replies: We have asked several producers this question
and they are reluctant to reveal what they consider a trade secret; how
many lemons per ton of olives. We do know that the whole lemon is used
and more lemons are used than you might imagine. I would suggest
that you experiment.
OOS responds: Your best bet is to go to bulkoil.com , in the search boxes choose for Sale and Spain for the country, then click on the Submit search button.
Ruth writes: Regarding your page titled Cooking with Olive Oil, I find your answer to Walter’s question seeking the boiling point of olive oil unhelpful at the least, and worse, dismissive. For sautéing or frying or roasting, surely the smoke point is critical information. But for poaching or simmering in olive oil – when you don’t want the oil to boil – knowing the boiling point of the oil is critical.
OOS replies: Poaching or simmering refers to cooking food slowly at low temperature in a water broth, gravy, or the food's own water juices. The beauty of poaching is that as long as there is some water in the pan the temperature cannot get higher than 212 degrees F. You can demonstrate this with a simple experiment: put a candle under a paper cup with water in it and you can boil the water without burning the cup. As soon as the water is gone, though, the cup will go up in flames. While there may be oil in the liquid, its the water part that's allowing the simmering.
The boiling point of olive oil (570
degrees Fahrenheit) is much higher than the smoking point and would be a
very dangerous temperature to try to achieve on a home stove. It
would certainly ruin the oil and incinerate any food in it, and would be
close to the flash or fire point (around 600 degrees). Danger of a
conflagration would be great. (When you are deep frying and you see the
oil "boiling" you are actually seeing the water in the batter or food
boiling, not the oil.)
Olive Oil Mill Consultation Feb. 26, 27, 28 and 29 Pieralisi reps will be in California from Italy along with the U.S. rep to meet with parties interested in olive oil processing equipment. Please call 805-688-1014 for appointment
Tulare County Olive Growers Olive Fruit Fly Pest Control District Meeting Thursday February 26, 2004 - meet at Ag Commissioner's office, Tulare CA - vote for approval of district.
Olive Expo - An Olive Production Event February 28th, 2004 Napa Valley Exposition Center.. Speakers: Guiseppe Fontanazza of Perugia, Italy: globalization of the olive industry, Hartley Lewis of Australia: high density olive farming, Gerrie Duvenage of South Africa: olive farming, Federico Capri of Sicily: high density olive farming, Margrit Mondavi of Robert Mondavi Winery: olive oil in human culture, Chef Annie Roberts: cooking with olive oil, Louise Ferguson of U.C. Davis: California's olive and oil industries, Don Johnson of California: producing olive oil 2 yrs after planting, Claudio Vignoli of Pieralisi: Olive Oil processing and extraction, Roberto Zecca, COOC tasting panel leader and board member: Olive oil tasting and evaluation. Included: Continental Breakfast, refreshments and a fantastic wine country luncheon with great wines. email:firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 707-963-9266
Natural Products Expo West March 4-7 2004Anaheim Convention Center, Anaheim CA
Southern Highlands Olive Festival this year. Sunday, March 7, High Range Olive Grove, Wombeyan Caves Road, Mittagong, Australia. Features: Displays of processing, harvesting and pruning equipment and machinery, cooking demonstrations and olive oil tastings and presentations, olive related products for sale, fabulous food and live music.
VINOLIVE Wine, Cheese, Olive & Olive Oil Fair 11-14 March 2004- Ýzmir, Turkey.> email: email@example.com
Sensory Evaluation of Olive Oil UC Davis March 12 & 13 Sensory Evaluation as a science, olive oil quality standards, classic olive oil defects, positive characteristic influences, what food - what olive oil?, defect arrangement tests to test your sensory abilities, world production statistics, classic styles of olive oil from Europe, classic styles of olive oil from California, California statistics and tasting, olive oil business in California, the COOC and the extra virgin seal program, oils of different quality : adulteration, labeling, cheap oils. $395 for two lunches and two tastings with class. enroll in section 033FST301 UC Davis, Davis California
Agricultural seminar and COOC fund-raiser will be held on Sunday, March 28, 2004 from 1 PM-430 PM in Hopland (Mendocino county). The seminar will feature farm advisor and olive oil production expert Paul Vossen as the keynote speaker. Additionally, there will be local olive oil/agriculture experts featured. Included in the seminar will be a mini-sensory evaluation of olive oil as well as a wine reception. This is a fantastic opportunity to meet leading ag experts and learn the latest information on olive oil production. Enjoy the beauty of a spring day in glorious Mendocino county! Further details to follow. This event is a COOC fund-raiser sponsored by the COOC.
SOL/Vinitaly April 1 - April 5th 2004, Verona ItalySOL is the largest and unique specialist international show dedicated exclusively to quality extra virgin olive oil.
Olive Oil Production Short Course April 1 & 2, 2004 UC Davis, CA Learn how to grow olives for commercial olive oil production, taught by UC Cooperative Extension farm advisors and specialists, covers California and world olive production trends and oil varieties; land selection and preparation, irrigation and fertility management, mechanical harvest alternatives, super high density systems, pest control including olive fruit fly management, marketing olive oil in california. Focus is on production of olives for oil, not on processing of olives into oil. $475 includes two lunches, one social dinner with speaker, tastings, fild trip and course materials. enroll in section 034FST301. Course is at Best Western Bonanza Inn, 1001 Clark Ave, Yuba City, CA
The Olive Food and Wine Festival - Olyffees 30 April & 1 May 2004 Prince Albert South Africa
Planting Olive Trees/ Olive Oil Appreciation May 1 9:30-3:30 Santa Rosa Junior College in CA. Dennis Black presents History of the olive tree, principles of growing olive trees, techniques of making olive oil, how to appreciate different kinds of olive oil from Spain, Italy and California, the olive fly, A formal olive oil tasting will be part of the class and will be conducted by members of the California Olive Oil Council Call 1-707-527-4372 for more information
All Things Organic May 2-4, 2004 McCormick Place, Chicago, North America's only all organic conference and trade show
2nd Annual Feast of the Noble Fruit: Olives, 5 course luncheon at Global Gardens ranch and olive grove May 29th in Los Alamos, CA. The luncheon will feature our entire product line and focus specifically on unique olive oil dishes produced by chef Jeff Olsen of New West Catering. Tickets are $95. And can be obtained by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 800.307.0447. This is a SlowFood USA event
Tiam 2004 June 4-7 2004 Bari Italy Gardening products, Mechanized picking, Plastic nets and cases, Extraction technologies, Stainless steel containers and vats, Bottling machines, Glass bottles, Labeling machines, Packaging, labeling and bottling, Equipments for testing olives and oils
Kirkpinar Olive Oil Wrestling - second week of July in Edirne, Turkey
Euro Fed Lipid Congress September 5-8, 2004,Edinburgh University Scotland
V International Symposium on Olive Growing September 27 - October 2, 2004,(Turkey) Info: Dr. Mucahit Taha Ozkaya, University of Ankara, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Horticulture, 06100 Ankara, Turkey. Phone: (90)5355264860, Fax: (90)3123179119, email: email@example.com
FEVAL - Don Benit Badajoz Spain, November 10 - 13, 2004 . FIAL. Feria Ibérica de la Alimentación. APIBERIA. Feria Internacional de Apicultura
EIMA International Agricultural and Gardening MachineryManufacturers Exhibition, Bologna, Italy November, 2004