The IOC Council of Members held its 23rd extraordinary session on 4 and 5 February 2015. Representatives from Albania, Algeria, Argentina, the European Union, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia and Uruguay attended (Uruguay also represented Montenegro, which was absent). Apologies were received from the representatives of Egypt, Iraq and Lebanon.
Several decisions were adopted at the session, some administrative and others technical. The technical decisions concerned the IOC standard for olive oils and olive pomace oils and the Codex standard especially and were notably to:
• Amend the organoleptic assessment method (COI/T.20/Doc. No 15/ Rev. 6)
• Amend the IOC trade standard for olive oils and olive pomace oils, in particular to decrease the lower limit for linoleic acid to 2.5% to allow for oils produced from olives harvested at an early degree of ripeness (COI/T.15/NC No 3/ Rev. 8)
• Adopt a single method to determine fatty acid methyl esters (COI/T.20/Doc. No 33)
• Amend the method for spectrophotometric investigation in the ultraviolet (COI/T.20/Doc. No. 19/Rev. 3)
• Extend the field of application of the method for the determination of aliphatic alcohols content to include the determination of triterpenic alcohols and correction of minor errors (COI/T.20/Doc No 26)
• Adopt three reports for the 24th session of the Codex Committee on Fats and Oils (9–13 February 2015, Malaysia)
At the session the Council also gave the go-ahead for the IOC to participate in the CLIMOLIVE project – Adaptation to CLIMate in the International Olive Council (IOC) Network of OLIVE Germplasm Banks – presented to the European Commission for funding. The objective of this project is to consolidate the network of the IOC’s 22 olive germplasm banks as a world reference for the conservation and sustainable use of genetic resources.
Council Members were informed about the arrangements for the implementation of the upcoming promotion campaign in Japan, especially the outcome of the exploratory meeting held in Tokyo on 26 January with representatives from the Embassies of the IOC member countries, Japanese associations and communications agencies.
The Executive Secretariat also reminded the Heads of Delegation about two approaching deadlines, namely 13 February 2015 for the presentation of grant applications (> €5 000) for technical assistance activities and national generic promotion activities and 2 March 2015 for the receipt of dossiers nominating candidates for the eight seminars to be organised by the IOC in 2015 and for the tasting panel leader training course in Jaen.
As no meeting was held on the future of the IOC, the European Union obtained the consent of the Council of Members to resume discussions on this matter as of 1 May.