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London International Health Olive Oil Competitions 2017

London International Health Olive Oil Competitions 2017" (London IHOOC 2017) marks the first entry of high phenolic EVOOs into the wildly popular IOOCs.

London, UK - February 9, 2017 - (

​London is already attracting the best olive oil producers in the world through this unique event to showcase and promote the health protective properties of high phenolic EVOOs (extra virgin olive oils), combined with a good taste profile.

Representatives will bring their EVOOs from all continents and olive oil producing countries to participate in the international high phenolic a. EVOO health claim and b. EVOO Packaging Competitions "London International Health Olive Oil Competitions 2017" (London IHOOC 2017) which will be held 7-10 April in London.

Now this international event will take the high phenolic EVOOs one step further. This event follows the extremely successful inaugural event last year, (London IOOC).

Mr. George Kouvelis, the founder of the London IOOC noted, “The participants will have the opportunity, to liaison, observe and learn everything they need about the latest developments and trends of the world market. They will also obtain valuable experience and reliable information about the most exceptional ways to promote and increase consumption of their exceptional products.”

The contest will award prizes "London Health Olive Oil Awards" category:

Extra virgin olive oil with a health claim

It is a valuable initiative that hopes to raise the bar for the promotion of olive oils with a health claim as a superfood to international markets. The aim is to promote the quality of extra virgin olive oil directly correlated with health benefits. The competition is the first international competition in the world that will give awards to oils that combine high health promoting and protective values combined with positive organoleptic characteristics.

The phenolic compounds will be measured using the NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) method discovered in 2012 by Dr. Prokopios Magiatis professor of Pharmacognosy and Chemistry of Natural Products, University of Athens and his team of researchers. Dr. Magiatis and Dr. Eleni Melliou will oversee the testing of the samples and ranking them based on their phenolic content. The NMR method is the most suitable for measuring accurately each phenolic compound individually. This is important when evaluating olive oils based on their health benefits.  Not all phenolic compounds have the same health benefit. Therefore, they need to be measured individually.

The EU 432/2012 health claim permitted for labelling of EVOO is based on specific phenolic compounds and specific minimum amounts need to be present.

“Olive oil polyphenols contribute to the protection of blood lipids from oxidative stress.”

“The claim may be used only for olive oil which contains at least 5 mg of hydroxytyrosol and its derivatives (e.g. oleuropein complex and tyrosol) per 20 g of olive oil. In order to bear the claim information shall be given to the consumer that the beneficial effect is obtained with a daily intake of 20 g of olive oil.”

Mr. Emmanuel Salivaras and respected olive oil assessor will lead a panel comprised of international reputable tasters for sensory evaluation of each sample.  

Numerous scientific studies have shown that certain olive oil phenolic substances protect the cardiovascular system and European legislation has officially acknowledged them with the 432/2012 health claim. The time has come the oils that are rich in these beneficial substances be distinguished and rewarded.

The scientific evaluation group of the phenolic components of our competition headed by Dr. Magiatis, has shown that extra virgin olive oils contain a wide range of natural health protective ingredients; their relative concentration differs significantly from one variety to another. Many of these compounds have been shown to possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and can protect the cardiovascular system.

The term "total phenols", of an EVOO is accepted as a measure of antioxidant capacity, but the "pharmaceutical" activity may be derived from specific compounds. One example is oleocanthal and oleacein; substances associated with peppery sensation in the throat and the bitter taste respectively caused by some fresh and high quality olive oils. These compounds contribute to the reduction of cardiovascular risk. In fact, olive oil is rich in oleocanthal and oleacein and may be regarded as a natural superfood.

This was found in a recent study on olive oil, presented by the Department of Nutrition of the University of California Davis and the Research Centre for Nutrition of the US Department of Agriculture in California and attended by those responsible for the scientific team of the competition.

In this research was studied whether the consumption of olive oil with a different composition, can inhibit platelet aggregation in healthy men and potentially protect against heart attack and stroke. It turned out that the oils rich oleocanthal and oleacein significantly inhibit platelet aggregation, whereas the oil containing no such substances, but had equivalent content of other phenolic compounds (mainly in free Tyrosol) failed to produce this result. Interestingly, a significant proportion of volunteers who participated in the study showed a strong response like the pharmaceutical dose of ibuprofen.

After four years of writing about the EU 432/2012 health claim labeling regulation it is finally becoming widely accepted. A major shift in the emphasis of IOOCs (International Olive Oil Competitions) is about to occur! From an emphasis on taste to an emphasis to the health benefits of extra virgin olive oil.

This event is about to shake up the IOOCs everywhere. Following the breakthrough labelling regulation by the EU that allowed a health claim on the label of high phenolic EVOO (extra virgin olive oil), it has finally dawned on the olive oil industry that a new category was suddenly created! Not all EVOOs are made the same. What separates them now is not only the acidity levels but more specifically the type and concentration of phenolic compounds they contain.

Health conscious consumers are willing to pay a higher price for these rare early harvest high phenolic EVOOs rich in phenolic compounds such as oleocanthal and oleacein. 

Contest: London International Health Olive oil Competitions 2017 (London IHOOC 2017) oil producers from all countries can take part by filling out an online request to participate.

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