Until today, there has been no such thing as Sustainability Certification for extra virgin olive oil. But thanks to the joint work of Oleificio Zucchi, CSQA and AmbienteItalia, this certification is finally here.
Sustainable Extra Virgin Olive Oil Certification has been achieved at last, opening out the prospect of creating a sustainable production chain for Italian extra virgin olive oil which protects the environment and the local community and ensures a fair level of pay for employees, with guarantees and transparency from the olive to the table.
An unprecedented project for the industry and “An investment of value on many fronts,” explains Alessia Zucchi, CEO of Oleificio Zucchi, “intended to encourage the Italian olive oil industry to adopt a policy of sustainability and transparency, to provide consumers with a higher-quality, fair, sustainable extra virgin olive oil, traceable from the olive grove to the plate”.
Developed by CSQA with strong support from Oleificio Zucchi and all the other supply chain players, the Certification process comprises more than 150 prerequisites to be complied with for every supply chain component, with audits from the growing phase to packaging.
These parameters can be grouped into four main, easily identifiable pillars; the standard Environmental assessment issues (integrated farming, life cycle, environmental impact and biodiversity); Social (protection of workers and the community, fight against illegal employment practices, training); plus, on the insistence of Oleificio Zucchi, an Economic area (fair price, generation and distribution of wealth, profitability and efficiency); and, for the first time, thanks to the support of Unaprol, the Nutritional aspect, fundamental for supplying consumers with an oil with specific product, nutritional and health parameters.
The innovative certification achieved by Oleificio Zucchi for its 100% Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil has evolved from the previous project undertaken with Legambiente and the Aipo, Cno – Consorzio Nazionale Olivicolo, Confoliva, Unapol, Unaprol and Unasco olive growers’ associations, and as the natural continuation of its strong mutual links with partners including FAI [Italian Environment Fund], Symbola [Italian Quality Foundation], La Scuola de La Cucina Italiana [Italian Cooking School] and Università degli Studi di Scienze Gastronomiche di Pollenzo [Food Science University].