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Sol d'Oro Awards: Italy takes the lion's share

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The 19th edition of the Sol d'Oro Competition certainly flew the Italian flag! Sixteen of the eighteen Medals envisaged in the six competition categories (Organic, Delicate Fruit, Medium Fruit, Intense Fruit, Single Variety, Absolute Beginners) were awarded to Italian extra virgin olive oils. This success story was shared among the main producing regions: four for Tuscany, three for Lazio, two for Sardinia, Campania and Umbria and one each for Puglia, Sicily and Calabria. The only international countries taking awards were Spain with a Sol d'Oro in the Delicate Fruit category and Slovenia with a Sol d'Oro in the Absolute Beginners section. The “Sol d'Oro Challenge 2021”, which rewards the best overall perfomance, went to Masoni Becciu, based Villacidro, Sardinia, for the second consecutive year.

The preview tasting of the award-winning olive oils is scheduled during Evoo Days, the discussion forum for the olive oil supply chain (5-6 July 2021 at Veronafiere), open exclusively to the trade press and Forum participants. The Award Ceremony for delivery of the Sol Gold, Silver and Bronze Medals will take place on Sunday 17 October during the Sol&Agrifood Special Edition (17-19 October 2021).

The 19th edition of Sol d'Oro attracted 225 samples from seven countries: Chile, Croatia, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain and Tunisia. This was a special edition where olives oils from the Mediterranean and South America competed together, given the impossibility of organizing the Southern Hemisphere edition because of the pandemic.

"This competition heralded the resumption - together with other events in the agro-food sector - of Veronafiere's operations at the end of the health emergency,” said Gianni Bruno, Director of the Veronafiere Wine & Food commercial area. "We have focused extensively since the 1990s on promoting quality extra virgin olive oil through Sol d'Oro and other important events, such as Evoo Days, with the aim of expanding the culture of the sector through insights and networking opportunities. Many marketing and promotion initiatives are also planned in Italy and abroad involving the olive oils taking awards in the competition."

 This edition of Sol d'Oro was also distinguished by the period in which took place. "This year, we further expanded the international character of the jury, with professional tasters not only from Italy but also from Spain, Jordan, Portugal, Slovenia, France and Greece," said Marino Giorgetti, panel leader of Sol d'Oro since the very first edition. “To ensure they could arrive in Verona, it was decided to postpone the competition until June, at the end of the health emergency, rather than the traditional appointment in February. Thanks to advanced conservation methods, all this had absolutely no effect on the quality of the olive oils taking part. It should be emphasised once again that Sol d'Oro and its blind tasting procedures with individual tasting booths confirmed its status as an extremely selective competition".

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