Madrid, 13 and 14 February 2023 – The Standardisation and Research Unit of the Executive Secretariat held a videoconference meeting for experts on the organoleptic assessment of virgin olive oils. About 50 people attended the meeting, including experts and advisors that had been officially appointed by IOC member countries. Most participants were panel leaders from IOC-recognised laboratories that conduct the sensory analysis of virgin olive oils.
The experts discussed the latest revisions of the organoleptic assessment method as well as new proposals. After discussing the new projects, they reviewed the progress of the studies carried out by the nine electronic working groups on sensory analysis. Participants discussed a wide range of topics, including accreditation, taster training, reference materials, statistics and samples with borderline results. They discussed the results of ring tests, studies on the Picual (ripe) and Chemlali varieties and the study on volatile compounds carried out in collaboration with the IOC group of expert chemists. Participants also discussed the fourth workshop on harmonising IOC-recognised panels, which will be held by videoconference from 18 to 20 September 2023, and the IOC accreditation trials for the period 2023-2024.
Participants were presented the profile sheet for the Mario Solinas Quality Award, the IOC’s competition for top quality extra virgin olive oils, which was revised following the work of the electronic working group. They then discussed the proposal made by one of the delegations concerning the institutional support provided by the IOC to national competitions organised by competent authorities: it was decided to create an electronic working group to study this issue.
The next meeting of the IOC expert group on the organoleptic assessment of virgin olive oils is scheduled for 26 and 27 September 2023.