The Northern Olive Oil Show is in its fourth year. It was inaugurated to help educate producers and consumers about the properties of olive oil.
The natural aromas and flavours of olive oil are as distinctive as those in wine. Very pleasant and gratifying in fine olive oil and less so when oils are ‘musty’ ‘fusty’ rancid and past their prime.
There is much debate about the good shelf life of olive oil. Generally it is agreed that it is past its best after 12 to 18 months.
A distinctive feature of the oils produced in the northern areas of the State is that most come from olives produced on trees that are more than 100 years old. Owners of these trees claim that there is a special quality in the oil and certainly the oils are scores highly in olive oil shows.
This year for the first time the show has a class for oils produced outside the northern area, which is accepted as being north of Tarlee and Kapunda.
The northern area is represented by even more entries this year and in the open class there are entries from all over South Australia, interstate and even overseas from Turkey and South Africa. The competitors from these countries tell us that there are no competitive shows for olive oil in their countries.
A further class has also been added for packaging and presentation. The judges for this class came from the retailing, marketing and design fields. With olive oil there is already established criteria for assessment. This was not so for the packaging class and the judges worked long and hard to set out the guidelines before making their decision.
Although this Show was open to entries outside the northern area, it is the aim of the organizing committee to focus attention on the northern area of the State and the fine oils that it produces.
To this end the award presentations have been made locally. The first year at Clare Spring Festival, next a feature at the Jamestown Show, and last year at Clare Show.
With the expanded coverage ;of the show this year and the large number of entries it was decided to make the presentation of awards for the northern area at the Jamestown Show and for the open and packaging classes at the Clare Show ten days later which will bring the olive oil to the attention of the show visitors from a very wide area.
A trophy has been donated for the first time for the best olive oil produced from ‘colonial groves’. Those trees planted from the first settlers in the northern area. We have been able to verify the planting of an ;olive grove by Thomas Duell in Kapunda in 1856. In recognition of this olive pioneer the trophy to be presented at the Jamestown has been named the Thomas Duell Inaugural ‘Colonial Grove’ Trophy.
The northern areas of South Australia have much to offer in the olive oil market.
The old trees producing so well after more than a hundred years are testimony that with such an ideal Mediterranean type climate northern South Australia has long been producing a world-class product.EXPLANATORY NOTES, EXHIBITOR PROFILES AND JUDGES’ COMMENTS
Chairman of Judges: Richard Gawel, Leader of the Australian Olive Association Organoleptic Assessment Panel.
Judges: Colin Cooter of Cooter & Leng,
Acidity: This is an important quality factor ad has been extensively used as a criterion for classifying olive oil in various commercial grades. For an oil to classified ‘extra-virgin’ the acidity level (measured as percentage of oleic acid) must be less than 1%.
Peroxide: This value is also an important quality factor and provides an indication of ‘freshness’ of the oil. Stale oils will be oxidized to a greater extent as a result of prolonged exposure to oxygen. This process of oil oxidation is speeded up when oils are exposed to light.
Class – Open class Exhibit 36. Taylieli Olive and Olive oil Establishment, Ankara, Turkey, Laleli (CLS)
Class – Open class, Exhibit 37, Taylieli Olive and Olive Oil Est., Ankara, Turkey, Laleli (NFT processed with tangerine)