On 31 August 2017, the Deputy Executive Director of the IOC, Mustafa Sepetçi, the Head of the Promotion and Administrative Units, Ender Gunduz, and the Head of the Department of Translation and Communication, Juliette Cayol, received the Chair of the Italian Association Città dell’Olio, Enrico Lupi, and its Director, Antonio Balenzano, at the IOC headquarters in Madrid. Città dell’Ollio is a member of the Mediterranean Olive Oil Cities Network (RECOMED).
Mr Lupi, who is also Vice Chairperson of RECOMED, recalled that the association Città dell’Olio, which holds public entity status, was created 23 years ago and currently has 335 members. Among its wide-ranging activities, the association is organising a “Camminata tra gli olivi”, a first national day of walking through olive orchards in which 130 Italian municipalities will participate. This initiative provides an effective way of raising awareness of the activities of the sector and sharing the beauty of olive tree landscapes with consumers.
Città dell’Olio will also participate in Olioliva, the annual festival of new olive oil, which will be held this year from 10 to 12 November in Imperia (Italy). For this, it plans to draw up a selection of the best olive oil museums in each of the RECOMED member countries. This not-for-profit network works for olive oil producing towns and cities in 13 countries (Albania, Croatia, Spain, Greece, Israel, Italy, Lebanon, Morocco, Montenegro, Portugal, Slovenia, Tunisia and Turkey) to promote and highlight the value of olive growing and olive oil, and contribute to the socio-economic development of olive growing areas.
Since the challenges raised by olive growing and protection and the production of olive oil and its consumption that lie at the heart of RECOMED’s mission are also part of the general objectives of the IOC, the Chair of Città dell’Olio asked the IOC to give its nominal support to this network of olive museums by granting the initiative its patronage and participating in Olioliva, alongside representatives of the European Commission and the Italian Minister of Culture, who is also invited.
To Mr Lupi’s satisfaction, the members of IOC Executive Secretariat welcomed this proposal.