On the 9th of June, the Japan Olive Oil Prize (JOOP) olive oil competition took place. JOOP is an international event launched by the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ICCJ) to promote and create awareness for high quality olive oil worldwide.
The panel consisted of 9 experts coming from Italy, USA, Spain and Turkey, who selected winners among 155 olive oils entered in the competition. Awards were assigned according to the taste (strong, medium, light) and the scent (tomato/tomato leaf, green almond, artichoke/herbs/olive leaf).
“This experience was very interesting. A tasting and selection so deep was possible because most of the oils were excellent. It is a condition that rarely happened, although I have been an evaluator in various international competitions for many years,” stated Pablo Voitzuk, member of the juror panel.
Jurors proclaimed the winners, which turned out to be quite an extensive list, given there were many categories this year. In addition to these categories, the best oils of the USA and Spain, the best organic oil, and the one with the highest polyphenol content were announced.
JOOP also presented a great opportunity to spread the culture of the olive oil in Japan, thanks to the seminars held by important tasters and oil experts on the same day. Seminars were led by Michiyo Yamada, Journalist and MIPAAF Official Olive Oil Taster, Marzia Migliorini, Research Supervisor at CCIAA Chemical Laboratory in Florence, and Kuwata Mizumatsu, Japan Olive Association president. These seminars talked about the characteristics that make an oil healthy, as well as the cultivation and oil extraction methods that influence the quality of the product.