The Oleum consortium is comprised of 20 partner organisation, bringing together competences from food analysis, food legislation, industrial equipment engineering, bioinformatics, communication and knowledge exchange. The project is coordinated by Prof. Tullia Gallina Toschi of the Department of Agricultural and Food Sciences of the University of Bologna, Italy. Click on the interactive map below for more information on the partners from each country, or see a browse the list of partners here.
UNIBO has gained a considerable experience in International and European research projects, successfully participated in FP7 with 268 funded projects in different specific programmes. In the first years of Horizon 2020, UNIBO won 110 projects (26 as a coordinator) for a total EU contribution of over 39 M€. In the framework of the Societal Challenge II – BioEconomy and related- initiatives, UNIBO is coordinating 2 projects, and participating as a partners in 23 agri-food projects, with a total EU contribution of about 7 M€. The research unit has expertise in the olive oil topic, particularly in the analytic and technology area. It has published more than 200 papers on the topic of olive oil, focused on chromatographic and spectroscopic methods useful to detect major and minor compounds as well as assessment of the sensory characteristics. Moreover, the researchers have carried out several studies on authenticity evaluation of label-declared geographical origin of extra virgin olive oil. Besides traditional and instrumental analysis, the research unit has expertise in sensory evaluation techniques and in conjoint analysis of sensory and chemical-physical data.
Role in OLEUM:
- Overall coordination and management of the project, to ensure an efficient implementation of the project
- Leading activities on analytical solutions for addressing olive oil authentication issues (WP4)
- Responsible for tasks related to consolidation and transfer of information on common and emerging frauds; quantitative panel test development and rapid screening by instrumental methods; and developing analytical tools to increase to consumer’s confidence on the geographical origin of extra virgin olive oils.
The Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) is the largest public institution dedicated to research in Spain and the third in Europe. Its main objective is to develop and promote research for the benefit of scientific and technological progress. The CSIC activity, ranges from basic research to technological development and is organized around eight scientific and technical areas, one of them is Science and Food Technology (CTA) in which the Instituto de la Grasa is included (Seville, Spain). CSIC has a long experience in managing EU project, with hundreds of project approved in the last FP. Furthermore, every year more than 1500 grants funded by EU are managed in CSIC. Instituto de la Grasa has participated/coordinated dozens of EU project. In particular the research group that participate in the proposal of the project has participated in more than 7 transnational projects (more than 4 countries) related to the research field developed in the proposal.
Since its foundation it has devoted special attention to the olive oil sector, contributing decisively to improve its scientific and technological level by developing new processing technology of extraction and refining of oils, preservation and packaging, control of oxidative damage, and development of analytical methods for quality and authenticity of olive oils. The role of the Institute is to develop oil and fat research to characterize and obtain high quality, healthy and safe food, and implement new technologies that respect the environment.
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading development of analytical solutions for addressing olive oil quality issues.
- Leading tasks related to development of methods and reference materials for quantification of volatile compounds; analytical tools and markers for detection of illegal processing (deodorisation); and sampling and analytical tools for detecting illegal and legal blends between olive oils and other vegetable oils.
As the Commission’s in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre’s mission is to provide EU policies with independent, evidence-based scientific and technical support throughout the whole policy cycle. Working in close cooperation with policy Directorates-General, the JRC addresses key societal challenges while stimulating innovation through developing new methods, tools and standards, and sharing its know-how with the Member States, the scientific community and international partners. The JRC has a wide range of laboratories and unique research facilities at its disposal. They make it a valuable partner in many research fields and through numerous collaborations, access to many facilities is granted to scientists from partner organisations.
JRC (Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements, IRMM) is hosting several European Union Reference Laboratories (EURLs) and provides a metrological inter laboratory comparison scheme to enable the benchmarking of laboratory performance. The International Measurement Evaluation Program (IMEP) aims to build up confidence where trade or border crossing problems exist. IMEP provides support to EU policies and the chemical measurement system of the enlarged EU assisting in the development of the national measurement systems.
Role in OLEUM:
- Lead the development the OLEUM Databank, a web-access platform to store the information generated by the OLEUM consortium and validated data from existing databases on OOs (WP5)
- Contributing participate in specific tasks of tasks related to consolidation and transfer of information on common and emerging frauds; identification and classification of gaps in the normative framework; standardization and harmonization (WP2)
- Contributing to development of a method suitable for quantification and setting up of artificial and reproducible reference materials for volatile compounds (WP3)
Fera Science Limited (Fera) is a translational science business, employing more than 500 people, including 350 scientists at the National Agri-food Innovation Campus a few miles from York. Its overarching purpose is to support and develop a sustainable food chain, a healthy natural environment, and to protect the global community from biological and chemical risks. As an RTO, Fera translates fundamental science into products and services which solve problems for governments and businesses. Fera provides services to customers in over 120 countries, and has published more than 600 papers in peer-reviewed journals listed in the Science Citation Index since March 2009. Fera has an outstanding track record in the contribution to, and coordination of, European RTD projects. Fera represents the UK on a number of key European and International Committees relating to methods of analysis and regulatory issues (e.g. EFSA, CEN, CODEX, and ILSI) and is a designated National Reference Laboratory for a range of food contaminants and residues in food and feed. FERA currently coordinates 4 FP7 projects including the 5 year €12M FoodIntegrity project with 38 partners that aims to assure the integrity of the food chain.
Role in OLEUM:
- Responsible for networking and technology transfer, including setting up the OLEUM Network and leading training and technology transfer in candidate methods
- Leading development of experiment description standards (WP5)
- Contributing to regulatory framework analysis, update and implementation and analytical solutions for addressing olive oil quality and authentication (WP2,3,4)
- Involved in communication and dissemination activities (WP7)
The University of Udine is an Italian Public University founded in 1978 by National Law. The University has scientific, educational, organizational and financial autonomy but is governed by public law. Currently, the University of Udine offers 35 first cycle degree courses and 35 second cycle degree courses. In addition, the University offers postgraduate teaching and research, with a broad and diverse range of training courses, specialisation schools (18), university master (7) and doctorate (15) degrees. It has more than 60.000 students and 700 professors and researchers. Scientific research is performed and coordinated by 14 Departments and 8 interdepartmental centres and supported by a central administrative office. UNIUD has been involved as partner in many different EU research projects, over 30 FP7 projects, 10 international projects and 29 territorial cooperation projects (including coordination of 8 of these).
The research unit of Food Chemistry, coordinated by Prof. Lanfranco Conte, belongs to the Department of Food Science (DIAL) that gathers several disciplines and research areas applied to agriculture and food, such as food chemistry, analytical chemistry, animal productions, crop productions, economics, food technologies and microbiology. DIAL is deeply involved in several national and international projects and has a worldwide reputation for its research and training activities. The UNIUD research unit of Food Chemistry has a strong competence on development and optimization of analytical methods, in particular in the sector of olive oil. Moreover, the Prof. L. Conte has a strong expertise within several international Institution, such as the International Olive Council, the Codex Alimentarius and the European Commission. UNIUD has published more than 100 papers regarding determination of several parameters in olive oil and related products, recently focusing on the employment of powerful and reliable multidimensional techniques that will be applied in the project.
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading work on regulatory framework analysis, update and implementation (WP2) specifically tasks related to identification and classification of gaps in the normative framework, and standardization and harmonization.
Istitut des Corps Gras (ITERG) is the French Institute for Fat & Oils, Industrial technical Centre created in 1948, supervised by the Ministry of Industry, having nevertheless, financial and administrative independence. ITERG devoted to develop R&D activities through industrial collective or contractual research, National and European project in the field of fat & oils. The main activities of ITERG in the field of oils & fat are analytical research and control; nutritional research on lipids, technological development and oleo chemistry. ITERG employs more than 20 scientists and engineers, focusing its activities on the design, support and execution of Regional, National and European R&D programs. ITERG disposes of two technological platforms dedicated to oil refining and Lipochemistry (from some kg to 1 ton) to develop and transfer processes from laboratory-scale to pilot-scale production.
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading work on soft deodorized OOs production (pilot-plant and blends) and involvement in tasks related to all aspects of the project.
Aristoteleio Panepistimio Thessalonikis (AUTH) is the largest Higher Education Institution in Greece and Southeastern Europe, with 13 faculties and a total of 42 departments and 4 independent Schools, with about 72,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students currently study in AUTH. AUTH is fully equipped with major facilities and analytical instrumentation. The Research unit Laboratory of Food Chemistry & Technology (LFCT) headed by Professor Maria Tsimidou belongs to the School of Chemistry of AUTH that serves all disciplines of Chemistry. The Laboratory has long experience in the areas of olive oil chemistry, heated oils chemistry, analysis of minor constituents of oils and fats (main focus on the importance of tocopherols, polyphenols, hydrocarbons and pigments to the oxidative stability of olive oil), natural products and natural antioxidants, among various other aspects of food chemistry, food technology, biotechnology and oenology. Furthermore, there is a great experience in international research projects and has a wide reputation in the aforementioned research topics.
Role in OLEUM:
- Lead activities aiming to increasing consumer’s confidence in the health properties of extra virgin olive oil by developing methods for determining phenolic compounds content.
- Contributing to development of suitable markers and methods to guarantee olive oil freshness and quality deterioration.
The University of Perugia is one of the oldest universities in Europe. The University is divided in 16 departments and more than 35.000 students attend. The University of Perugia has many international relationships and cultural agreements with about 300 Universities and other Research and Education Institutions. The University has three Centers of Excellence of international importance as well as a number of national research centers. Moreover, the University has collaborative scientific relationships with other European, American, Japanese, Chinese and Indian universities.
The research units coordinated by Maurizio Servili belongs to the division of Food Technology of the Department of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (DSA3). The scientific activity of the team has been oriented towards the study of food quality and technology. In particular, expertise on the study of the minor components (especially phenolic compounds and volatiles) of olives and their derivatives has been acquired. During recent years the developed research projects have provided important contributions concerning factors regulating the phenolic antioxidant and other minor compounds concentration in virgin olive oil and in its by-products, their sensory and biological properties, and aspects related to their analytical evaluation.
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading tasks on developing markers and methods for guaranteeing olive oil freshness and predicting quality deterioration.
- Involved in developing a Quantitative Panel Test and rapid screening by instrumental methods; developing of methods to determine phenolic compounds; and developing analytical tools for assessing the geographic origin of extra virgin olive oils.
The Eurofins group is one of the world leaders in food testing, offering analytical services to its customers. The lab of WEJ Analytik in Hamburg is particularly specialized in the analysis of olive oils and other oils and fats, as thousands of commercial samples are analyzed per year with all common analytical methods and judged by a sensory panel; new analytical techniques and screening methods for olive oil are currently being developed (e.g. NMR, NIR). From its base in Germany, Eurofins already has access to one of the largest basin of OO consumers outside the main OO producing countries. However, it is also part of an international group and linked to other Eurofins sites throughout the world, offering extensive market opportunities in extra EU countries (USA, Brazil, China, New Zealand).
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading a survey on existing databases and tools for olive oil analysis and will contribute to the development of the OLEUM Databank
- Involvement in several tasks related to development of analytical solutions for addressing olive oil quality, authenticity, geographical origin and blends with other vegetable oils
Universitat de Barcelona has been participating in European research programmes since the 4th Framework Programme, and has been the host institution for an important number of Marie Curie fellowships, training netwoks and other European projects. UB has a specialized Unit for the management of International Research Projects, managing an average of 150 European contracts a year. Since January 2010 the Universitat de Barcelona is part of the prestigious League of European Universities Research (LERU), a network of elite research-intensive universities across Europe which was founded in 2002 with the denominator common teaching quality in higher education and the highly competitive international research, and is the only Spanish university invited to participate in this renowned alliance. The UB has 109 departments and more than 5,000 full-time researchers, technicians and research assistants, most of whom work in the UB’s 249 research recognized groups.In 2009, the Ministry of Education recognized the University of Barcelona in its first call of the program Campus of International Excellence (CIE) for the UB’s project jointly undertaken with the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC), the Barcelona Knowledge Campus, or BKC. Finally, in the new 2010 call, the campus officially known as the Health Universitat de Barcelona Campus (HUBc) was also given CIE status.
The research group UB relies on a long-lasting experience on the study of virgin olive oil (VOO) volatile fraction as related to organoleptic characteristics and as a function of distinct agronomical, geographical and technological factors. In particular, the identification of chemical markers of VOO organoleptic characteristics is one of its main research lines. Likewise, the UB group has a proved competence in the development of analytical methods (SPME-GC-MS; GC-olfactometry). In particular, expertise on high and ultra-high resolution mass spectrometry applied to acylglycerol profiling, secoiridoids characterization in VOO.
Role in OLEUM:
- Contributing to quantitative panel test development and rapid screening by instrumental methods, development of a method suitable for quantitation and setting up of artificial and reproducible reference materials for volatile compounds; development of methods to determine phenolic compounds (WP3)
- Contributing to development of markers, analytical tools and sampling methods for detection of illegal processing (deodorization), illegal and legal blends between olive oils and other vegetable oils and geographical origin of extra virgin olive oils (WP4)
The European Food Information Council (EUFIC) is a non-profit organisation that communicates science-based information on nutrition and health, food safety and quality, to help the public to be better informed when choosing a well-balanced, safe and healthful diet.
EUFIC has been involved in 23 EU-funded research projects since 2004, as dissemination and research partner, mainly desk or consumer research, and has acted as a coordinator in two projects, FLABEL and CLYMBOL.
Role in OLEUM:
- EUFIC will lead OLEUM’s dissemination and communication activities (WP7).
The European Federation of Food Science and Technology (EFFoST) is a non-profit association, with 80 societies in most European countries affiliated to it. EFFoST has become a focus for European cooperation among food scientists, engineers, technologists and business in food and food-related areas. EFFoST is the European group of the International Union of Food Science & Technology (IUFoST), which in turn is a full member of the International Council for Science (ICSU), the scientific organisation of the United Nations (UN). EFFoST has developed publications, and organises events on topical issues of industrial relevance, including legislation and its enforcement.
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading tasks related to knowledge transfer and communication activities in order to guarantee the transfer of project results to the wider scientific community involved in olive oil analysis (WPs 6 & 7)
LABLICATE is a scientific software development company specialized in processing of chemical analytical data. LABLICATE offers customized and vendor-independent software solutions, which include database frameworks, reporting tools and data processing solutions. As strong advocates of open source software, LABLICATE offers an open source software for the analysis of chromatographic and mass spectrometric data (OpenChrom) and is heavily involved in the establishment of the Eclipse Science Working Group, where numerous scientific open source projects have gathered to solve the problems of making science software interoperable and interchangeable. Due to high expertise in data format decoding LABLICATE offers with OpenChrom a multi-vendor solution to its customers.
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading the set-up of the knowledge database framework for storing, retrieving and sharing of data concerning olive oil authentication
- Contributing to development of experiment description standards (WP5)
- Contributing to networking and technology transfer and dissemination and communication activities
UP ZRS IZO (Institute for Oliveculture) is an institute within the University of Primorska (UP), Slovenia. UP ZRS IZO has a Laboratory for oil analysis which is ISO 17025 accredited (2004) and IOC recognized for chemical and organoleptic analyses each year since 2005. The national panel for sensory testing of virgin olive oil is also active within the laboratory. Along with tests for external clients, the Laboratory also performs tests within research projects in the UP ZRS IZO’s frame; it is also active in metrological area. The Laboratory was appointed as the holder of the national standard in the field of food of plant origin/olive oil. UPZRS IZO has taken part in many projects, has published important papers regarding olive oil topic and has 20 years of experience in sensory testing and screening by instrument methods of olive oil.
Role in OLEUM:
- Contributing to development of a Quantitative Panel Test and rapid screening by instrumental methods
- Involved in development of methods to determine phenolic compounds to increase consumer’s confidence on the health properties of extra virgin olive oils
NESTEC Ltd is a fully owned subsidiary of Nestlé S.A. the world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company. Nestlé Research Center (NRC) a part of NESTEC is located near Lausanne, Switzerland and is one of the leading research platform in food and nutritional sciences. With 700 members of staff from 50 nations, NRC has a strong position in the international scientific community supported further by more than 200 external scientific partnerships and University collaborations and around 270 scientific publications each year. As Food Company using a large selection of oils and fats distributed worldwide to manufacture the Nestlé products and ensure the compliance to our consumers, quality and authenticity of raw materials are considered as key priority for us. To achieve this target, severe and strict analytical criteria are defined in our purchasing specifications to obtain raw materials in accordance with our high expectations. Olive oil is considered on the top priority of company’s investigations.
Role in OLEUM:
- Contributing to developing sampling and analytical tools for illegal and legal blends between olive oils and other vegetable oils
- Involved in Quantitative Panel Test development and rapid screening by instrumental methods
- Contributing to the improvement/validation of analytical methods, participating in ring-tests programs and advising to guide on applicability of developed methods toward impactful implementation
Institute of Agriculture and Tourism is a public research institute, with a 140 years long tradition, specialized in fundamental and applied research in agriculture, food technology, biotechnology, ecology and social sciences. Research activities are nowadays mainly oriented towards olive growing, olive oil quality, viticulture, enology, vegetable growing and rural development. The Institute is organized in three departments (Department of Agriculture and Nutrition, Department of Economics and Agriculture Development and Department of Tourism) and includes the Experimental Agricultural Farm with registered collections of autochthonous grapevine and olive cultivars, Mini-vinification and Technology Development Center.
Within the Department of Agriculture and Nutrition operate 4 laboratories which perform analyses on olive oil, wine, soil and genetic analyses as well as 2 sensory panels, for olive oil and wine. Laboratories and panels perform analyses both for scientific and commercial purposes. Laboratory and Sensory panel for olive oil testing are both ISO/IEC 17025 accredited and authorized by the Croatian Ministry of Agriculture for official controls of olive oil on Croatian market. IPTPO sensory Panel is also recognized by IOC from November 2014 until December 2017.
Along with its scientific and commercial activities, the Institute maintains a high quality connection with the private sector, incorporating both scientific and professional expertise to support and foster national and regional development in agriculture, food industry and tourism in rural areas.
Role in OLEUM:
- Contributing to Quantitative Panel Test development and rapid screening by instrumental methods
- Participating in development of the OLEUM Network and to communication and dissemination activities
National Olive and Olive Oil Council (UZZK) is a non-governmental organization (NGO) which contributes to the development of olive growing, the enhancement of promoting and branding, the development of olive and olive oil production, consumption and trading, the registration of the production and the integration of internal and external market conditions in Turkey.
Besides, it is monitoring the market conditions and identifying their constraints and potentials in the Turkish olive sector. The Council is representing Turkey in the IOC delegation meetings. The Council is also acting as a consultant to the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock in the development of national agricultural policies.
Role in OLEUM:
- UZZK has an official sensory panel recognized by the IOC, and will therefore be involved in Quantitative Panel Test development and rapid screening by instrumental methods.
Smart Assays, established in 2005, provides tailor made R&D services for biotechnology, food and pharmaceutical companies. Specific experience ranges from work plan design, through assay development process, establishment of validated assays and up to the final stage of technology transfer to the customer’s facility (web site: http://www.assays.co.il/) SMART ASSAYS is devoted to the development and validation of methods for olive oil analyses using fluorescence techniques to detect fluorescent components (chlorophyll, tocopherols, phenolic compounds) and the setting up of a simplified practical application of the fluorescence techniques, to be used by various laboratories, including small labs.
Role in OLEUM:
- Involved in development of suitable markers and methods to guarantee olive oil freshness and predict quality deterioration
- Contributing to development of methods to determine phenolic compounds to increase consumer’s confidence on the health properties of extra virgin olive oils
- Contributing to development tool for analysis and sampling of illegal and legal blends between olive oils and other vegetable oils and determining the geographical origin of extra virgin olive oils
Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET) is the leading organization dedicated to the promotion of science and technology in Argentina. It operates in four major areas: i) Agricultural sciences, engineering and materials; ii) Biological and health sciences, iii) Natural Sciences, and iv) Social Sciences and Humanities, by organizing and financing research, laboratories and research centres in universities and other public or private institutions, and promoting scientific and technological exchange and cooperation within the country and abroad. CONICET conducts international cooperation projects in more than 30 countries and institutions of international reputation in the framework of several programmes.
UNMdP has gained a considerable experience in international research projects, successfully participated in more than 130 funded projects in different specific programmes (acting as coordinator in 5 of them). The research group of Applied Microbiology (GIMA), coordinated by Dr. Sandra Rosa Fuselli, belongs to the Department of Biology of Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales (FCEyN−UNMDP). GIMA is a multidisciplinary group that gathers several disciplines and research areas applied to food, agriculture, and animal health, such as vegetal/food productions, bioactive natural products, agroindustrial by-product valorisation, bee health, microbiology and analytical chemistry. GIMA has twenty papers, three chapters in books, one book and two EUR−scientific and technical research series regarding the characterization and authentication of agricultural food products from different points of view, e.g. botanical and geographical origin, maturity state, technological properties, elaboration processes, specific EU quality schemes (PDO, PGI), etc., by chromatography coupled to spectrophotometry and mass spectrometry, fingerprinting techniques such as nuclear magnetic resonance and isotopic ratio mass spectrometry, and chemometrics. Nine of these publications are relative to the olive oil topic. Moreover, GIMA has more than fifteen publications related to the quality and safety of edible oils, and the applications of essential oils for the treatment of bee pathologies. GIMA has proved expertise in advanced analytical techniques (HPLC−DAD−MS/MS, UPLC−DAD−QTOF/MS, NMR, IRMS) and microbiological analysis (traditional and new approaches such as cellular mechanism quorum−sensing).
GIMA collaborates on the olive oil topic with the Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Industrial (INTI), for the chemical and sensory characterization of olive oils produced in Argentina. INTI has a long history supporting and actively strengthening the olive oil sector by different actions, participated in the arrangement for the inclusion of Argentina as a member of the IOC and are organising two official laboratories in Buenos Aires and Mendoza for the physic−chemical analysis of olive oils according to IOC standards in order to be recognised by IOC (IOC has already expressed its interest in the fact that Argentina has an official laboratory recognised by IOC).
Role in OLEUM:
- Involved in development of analytical solutions for addressing olive oil quality and authentication issues
China National Research Institute of Food and Fermentation Industries (CNRIFFI) was established in 1955. In the 50+ years since its establishment, CNRIFFI had accomplished over 500 items of research projects; including 56 National Award for Science and Technology Progress and Invention, 123 awards of provincial and ministerial level, and 30 national invention patents. CNRIFFI formulated over 350 national standards, more than 260 industrial standards, and 20 military standards, contribute greatly in industry restructuring and technology improving. CNRIFFI current have 160 employees totally, 136 of them are scientific researchers.
Role in OLEUM:
- Contributing to developing and improving analytical methods for olive oil authenticity.
Queen’s University Belfast (informally QUB) is a public research university in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The university was chartered in 1845, and opened in 1849 as “Queen’s College, Belfast”, one of three Queen’s Colleges in Ireland, it became an independent university in 1908 and is the ninth oldest university in the UK. Today, Queen’s is a member of the Russell Group, combining excellence in research and education with a student-centred ethos. It offers academic degrees at various levels and across a broad subject range, with over 300 degree programmes available Queen’s is ranked 8th in the UK for Research Intensity with over 75% of its research assessed as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ in REF 2014. Building on its disciplinary excellence, the University has created four new flagship Global Research Institutes which bring leading academics together to tackle some of the greatest global challenges of our time in the areas of: Global Peace, Security and Justice; Cyber Security; Health Sciences; and Food Security. The Institute for Global Food Security (IGFS) is one of these four Global Research Institutes, established to address the future of the world’s food systems.
The research group working in OLEUM (Tassos Koidis and Paul Brereton) relies on a
long-lasting experience on the study of vegetable oil such as olive oil, method development and validation as well as extensive experience in the science-policy interface.
Role in OLEUM:
- Leading the work to develop and run the OLEUM Network
- Coordinate the global method validation effort for the OLEUM methods developed in the consortium over the course of the project