Mzansi bags 9 of world’s top olive oil awards

With four gold and five silver awards, South Africa was a shining star at this year’s New York International Olive Oil competition. All of the country’s extra virgin olive oil winners are from the Western Cape.

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Less than a month after a Breede River estate won silver at Japan’s top competition for extra virgin olive oil, they also won gold in the world’s most prestigious olive oil awards.

Rio Largo, owned by husband-and-wife power team Brenda and Nick Wilkinson, are among the shining South Africans stars at this year’s New York International Olive Oil competition (NYIOOC).

This morning, the SA Olive Industry Association announced that no less than five of its members won nine awards at NYIOOC. This competition’s annual list of award winners are described as the authoritative guide to the world’s best olive oils and the dedicated producers who craft them.

The results of the New York International Olive Oil competition is proof that Western Cape farmers produce some of the world’s finest extra virgin oils. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi
The results of the New York International Olive Oil competition is proof that Western Cape farmers produce some of the world’s finest extra virgin oils. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

The NYIOOC results prove that Western Cape farmers produce some of the world’s finest extra virgin oils.

Besides Rio Largo, the country’s other gold winners were Andante Forte and Andante Intenso from the Wêreldgeluks Olive Estate near Porterville, and Willowcreek Directors Reserve from the Willow Creek Olive Estate in the Nuy Valley.

Wêreldsgeluk first started planting olive trees in 2006 and has since received many local and international awards. The farm is owned by Willie Duminy, an advocate, who started farming with his wife, Lisa, after traveling through some of Europe’s top oil-producing regions.

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ALSO READ: Olive oil plunge predicted after last year’s harvest boom

Well-deserved recognition

The silver award winners were Willow Creek Estate Bland, Mardouw Oil of the Olive, Andante Mezzo, Willow Creek Nuy Valley and De Rustica Estate Collection Coratina.

SA Olive manager Vittoria Jooste says: “These accolades are testament to the quality of South African extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) and a well-deserved recognition of the efforts of those involved in making the success happen. We are extremely proud of our producers who fly the South African EVOO flag on the global scene. We hope that even more producers will be able to participate in future editions.”

This year’s NYIOOC saw a record-breaking 1 171 entries from 25 countries. All entries were analysed by 21 expert tasters from 13 countries working remotely and supported by the NYIOOC technical teams.

The award winners are presented on the Official Index of the World’s Best Olive Oils, the world’s authoritative guide to high-quality extra virgin olive oils.

ALSO READ: Francois Cilliers wins top Western Cape award

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