The International Olive Council (IOC) was represented by the Head of the Olive Oil and Environment Department, Juan Antonio Polo Palomino, at the official opening ceremony of the 15th edition of the Master’s Degree in Olive Oil and Olive Oil Technology at the University of Córdoba, which took place on Tuesday 3 October, 2023.
The Master’s in Olive Growing and Olive Oil Technology takes place every two years since 1995 and is organised by the University of Córdoba (UCO), the Andalusian Regional Government’s Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development, the IFAPA (Instituto Andaluz de Investigación y Formación Agraria, Pesquera, Alimentaria y de la Producción Ecológica), the CSIC (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas), the International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) through the IAMZ, the Fundación Patrimonio Comunal Olivarero (FPCO) and, finally, the IOC.
The inauguration ceremony was attended by Cristina Aguilar, Vice-Rector of Postgraduate Studies at the University of Córdoba; Juan Ramón Villegas, Head of the Agriculture, Livestock, Industry and Quality Department of the Córdoba Regional Delegation; Raúl Compés, Director of the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Zaragoza (IAMZ-CIHEAM); Mª Leire Molinero, the Director of the Sustainable Agriculture Institute of Córdoba (IAS-CSIC); Darío Reina Giménez, the Director of the IFAPA of Córdoba; and Enrique Quesada Moraga, the Director of the Master in Olive Growing and Olive Oil Technology of the UCO.
In his intervention, Juan Antonio Polo Palomino recalled that one of the IOC’s missions is to contribute to the sustainable development of the sector, and that, to this end, there is no more powerful tool than people to transform a reality. He added that training individuals to meet the challenges currently facing the olive sector was a guarantee of success. He further encouraged the students to make the most of this Master’s degree and to train themselves so they are ready to face the historic moment that is marking the agricultural reality, in particular when it comes to the need of feeding a growing world population, with a constant useful surface area and increasingly scarce resources, and in the face of new challenges, such as responding to climate change.