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Extra Virgin Olive Oil Awards – Top Honours Announced

2012 New Zealand Extra Virgin Olive Oil Awards

Press Release 30 September 2012

New Zealand’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil Awards – Top Honours Announced

Winners in New Zealand’s most prestigious competition for olive oil were announced last night in Wellington, with international judges praising local oils as world class.

Robinson’s Bay Olives from Akaroa took out the 2012 Best in Show as well as Best in Class in the Commercial Medium Blend Class at the New Zealand Extra Virgin Olive Awards, run by Olives New Zealand, the national organisation for oil growers.

McGiven Valley Olive Grove from Auckland won the Best in Boutique Category for growers who produce less than 100 litres of certified extra virgin olive oil.

Medals were spread across New Zealand’s growing regions with 11 going to Wairarapa, 9 to Auckland, 7 to Waiheke Island, 4 to Northland, 3 each to Bay of Plenty and Hawkes Bay and 1 each to Kapiti, Canterbury and Nelson.

The judging panel of six trained and experienced international and New Zealand olive oil tasters praised Robinson’s Bay Olives ‘Grove Blend’ as a “full bodied olive oil, elegant with a warm finish and well balanced”. Robinson’s Bay is owned by Chris and Annette Moore who own a medium sized block of nearly 1,000 trees established in 1994.

McGiven Valley Olive Grove is owned by Heather and Christopher Seel and their Medium Blend was described by judges as: “A big oil, intense and herby with good balance.”

Both Robinson’s Bay and McGiven Valley have been consistent medal winners at previous Olives New Zealand Awards.

The chief international olive oil judge, Dr Fernando Román Martinez from Spain commented on the quality of the 44 oils entered in New Zealand’s top olive oil awards, and praised the standard of the venue for the awards, the Food, Nutrition and Human Health Facility at Massey University’s Albany Campus.

Dr Martinez, a leading international olive oil judge and Spanish food scientist at Instituto de la Grasa located in Seville, was impressed by the professionalism of the awards: “The use of a dedicated food and beverage tasting laboratory, an expert Facilitator and other trained staff ensures a professional competition and allows the oils in the blind judging to compete on an equal basis.”

Consumers can be assured that New Zealand olive oil displaying the red OliveMark has met the strict standards for Olives New Zealand Certification, is extra virgin, of high quality and an authentic product.

A further mark of excellence is a medal from the Olives New Zealand Extra Virgin Olive Oil Awards.


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