ARTOLIO project meeting in Israel

From 19 to 24 February 2023 the ARTOLIO Profitable and Sustainable artisanal olive oil industry in the Mediterranean project held one of its most important meetings in Israel to analyse the results obtained until now by its stakeholders and make recommendations for this last year of the project.


This meeting, coordinated by Giora Ben-Ari, Head of the Fruit Tree Sciences Unit, Plant sciences Institute of the Volcani Institute, Agriculture Research Organisation (Israel), counted with the participation of the Head of the olive growing, olive technology and environment Unit of the International Olive Council (IOC), Lhassane Sikaoui, and Catarina Bairrao Balula, Head of the technical cooperation and training department of the IOC.

This project aims to support the small olive oil producers in the Mediterranean area to overcome the difficulties derived from the small dimension of their properties, of managing rain-fed olive orchards, based on family manpower, providing the olive farmers with the necessary instruments for the professionalisation of their activity, in order to achieve a profitable and sustainable olive oil production.

The project created in each participant country a Native Olive Regional Knowledge Center (NOReKC) that provides up-to-date training on the production of a competitive extra virgin olive oil, assisting the farmers in marketing, sales, finance, policy and legislation, at national level and in entering new global markets.

The meeting counted with representatives from Cyprus Department of Agriculture – Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment, GreeceHellenic Agricultural Organization DEMETER/ Institute of Olive Tree, GreecePerrotis College, the American farm school, Israel– Volcani Center, Agricultural Research Institute, Palestine- Palestinian Centre for Agriculture Research and Development-, SpainCenter for Advanced Studies in Olive Grove and Olive Oils of the University of Jaén and the International Olive Council that has the role of Advisor and disseminator of the results of the project.

The project started with rain-fed plots and its first mission was to establish an irrigation system in these plots. It generated a higher olive yield and improved the oil quality as well as enhanced the profitability of the project participant farmers, being expected during this year the results of the on-line commercialisation of the products.

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Visit of the ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina

On 28 March 2023, the Executive Director of the International Olive Council (IOC) welcomed H.E. Danka Savic, the Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to Spain, who came to officially deliver the country’s application to join the IOC.

The ED congratulated his guest for the initiative taken by his government and assured him of the full support of the Executive Secretariat in his administrative efforts to finalise the country’s membership.

The Ambassador said she was proud to see her country join the IOC family, especially as the olive tree has a privileged place in the region. She then asked about the next steps as her government would like to become a member before the June 2023 session.

The ED, the Deputy Executive Director Mr. Jaime Lillo, and the Head of External Relations Department explained certain technical details and the steps to be taken and undertook to assist the country’s side if necessary.

At the end of the meeting, the ED gave a tour of the headquarters and souvenir photos were taken to commemorate the event.


IOC Ambassador

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Azerbaijani delegation visits IOC headquarters prior accession to the IOC family

IOCThe International Olive Council (IOC) hosted on 28 March a delegation of ten officials, led by H.E. Elnur Aliyev, First Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Economy, accompanied by H.E. Ramiz Hasanov, the Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the Kingdom of Spain and the Principality of Monaco. Mr. Yusif Abdullayev, Director of the Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Fund (AZPROMO) was also present during the visit, which took place ahead of Azerbaijan’s accession to the International Agreement.


The delegation was welcomed on arrival by the IOC Executive Director, Abdellatif Ghedira, along with his deputies, Jaime Lillo and Mustafa Sepetci, who expressed their gratitude to the Deputy Minister for the visit.

In the meeting room, Mr Ghedira introduced the IOC officials present. This courtesy visit served as an opportunity to explain the mission of the IOC and its contribution to the development of the world olive sector and to show the delegation the headquarters of the Organisation. Mr Aliyev expressed his appreciation the IOC for the invitation and introduced his team.

After this round of introductions, the Head of the External Relations Department, Andoni Olano, gave a brief presentation of the Organisation and gave the floor to the Heads of Unit present. Mercedes Fernández, from the Standardisation and Research Unit; Lhassane Sikaoui, from the Olive Growing, Olive Oil Technology and Environment Unit; and María Juárez, from the Promotion and Economics Unit, explained the activities of their respective units. The head of the Observatory and Information Systems Department, Javier Larraona, also presented the activities underway in his area.

During the meeting, both parties engaged in a productive exchange of views and identified several potential areas of cooperation. The collaboration will not only strengthen the ties between Azerbaijan and the International Olive Council but also enable the IOC to contribute to Azerbaijan’s olive sector through its extensive knowledge, experience, and forums. These points of collaboration will be further elaborated and formalized in a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), ensuring mutual benefits for both parties involved.

To conclude the visit, the First Deputy Minister presented Mr Ghedira with a ceramic tile made by the Icherisheher Traditional Art Centre, symbolizing the country’s craftsmanship. At the end of the meeting, the ED took his guests on a tour of the headquarters and souvenir photos were taken to commemorate the event.


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