The Process for Certifying Olive Oil as PDO or PGI Explained

The certification of olive oil as Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) or Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) refers to a rigorous procedure overseen by designated authorities.
These labels further attest to the fact that the production, processing and preparation of the olive oil occurs in specific regions and maintains distinctive qualities. 

Application and Documentation

  • Interested producers or processors must initiate the certification by submitting an application to the designated authority in their respective nation.
  • The application includes detailed documentation, proving that the olive oil is produced, processed and prepared in a specific geographical area, and maintains its inherent characteristics.

Investigation and Scrutiny

  • An audacious investigation follows the application submission. This involves assessing the authenticity of the claim, the defined geographical area, and the distinctiveness of the product concerning the areas climate, terrain and traditional methods used.
  • The scrutiny extends to ensure rigorous adherence to consistent quality and traceability to the specific origin.

Official Recognition

  • If the olive oil satisfies all the stringent requirements, national authority grants PDO or PGI status to it.
  • The authority formally records the olive oil thus certified on a national list of PDO and PGI products.

EU Verification and Protection

  • National authority forwards the certified status to European Commission (EU) for a check through and final validation.
  • After EU’s validation, the olive oil is protected under EU law against imitation, misuse of the product’s name or fraud anywhere within the EU.
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