One must question the logic of the continuous assault on imported olive oils that is taking place in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. While the main reason promulgated for this New World campaign is to increase the quality of olive oil supplied to consumers, many see it as a thinly disguised attempt to increase the sales of locally produced extra virgin olive oils.
With the global access to local news and commentary, the danger of this approach is that the global brand of olive oil is permanently damaged and it will take more than a few new producing countries to repair the damage. The sales of olive oil are very price sensitive as we are seeing in Greece and Italy.
It is time we as an industry encouraged the comparison of the positive attributes olive oil – refined and extra virgin – with other vegetable oils, and in doing so, boost the global olive oil brand rather than tainting it.