George Sakellaropoulos, owner of the olive groves in the roots of Taygetos and Parnonas “took off” the flavors and uses of olive oil
It is the derivative that “took off” its flavors and uses Greek (organic) olive oil. Speaking two and a half years ago to APE-MPE about Greek olive growing, he had said that it was a “marathon race”. At that time he was awarded … only with 100 international awards for his gourmet olive oils and his “balsamic” olives …
Today, 300 awards later, the George Sakellaropoulos, owner of the homonymous olive groves in the roots of Taygetos and Parnon, proves that he is now an … Olympian-marathon runner, with a record of performance that will hardly be achieved by another olive grower on the planet. His own points, in fact, contributed 28% of the 14,727 points that Greece collected, winning this year the first place in the world, in the basic category of high gastronomy with olive oil flavor.
Behind these awards, the distinctions, the researches that start from EKPA and reach up to Yale and Harvard, of the special olive oil that presents an astonishing content of 550 mg / Kg of olive oil (polyphenol), the extensive use of oil products in health. creams and cosmetics, there are 30 years of persistent, organized, methodical effort made by the Lacedaemonian olive grower-phenomenon, to change the world map of olive oil in favor of the Greek national product, with his “weapons” the great demands of today’s business: quality and innovation.
In his interview with APE-MPE, G. Sakellaropoulos reveals small and big secrets of success and that the most recent of those who “run” in his marathon, are the olives in the form of powder in a capsule to reduce it cholesterol! The most semiotic is that in 16,584 olive oils, from 2105 companies in 37 countries of the world, the organic raw olive oil of its olive groves is in the TOP 10 best olive oils of Koroneiki variety in the world for 2021. The USA knows the Mediterranean diet and “drinks … oil with his name “.
– The 400 awards for your organic olives and olive oils are now a … World Record. What is the beginning, how did it evolve and what are the ingredients of excellence and uniqueness that bring all these distinctions?
Engaging in oil production was the evolution of the special bond I had developed with the sacred olive tree and the natural way of life. The passion for quality and innovation was used by me in 1992, when organic farming was still an unknown concept in our country, to consciously choose certified organic olive growing, exclusively Single Estate. The excellent combination of ideal conditions of microclimate, flora and fauna at the foot of Taygetos and Parnon, gives our organic oil products primary characteristics of superior taste and quality, which are collectively defined as Terroir “Sakellaropoulos Organic Olive groves”.
30 years ago, began and evolved this journey that contained our dream and inspiration, that brought the knowledge and experience to achieve the goal, in a special way and innovative methods developed in our organic oil products. The criterion of stability all these years was based on three axes: High quality, scientific monitoring and proof. It was not a coincidence.
In 2012, and only after 20 years of testing and preparation that we went through, began the conscious participation in the recognized international competitions around the world, with our triptych and flag our beliefs, which are: first Greece, then Sparta Laconia and Finally, the organic olive groves of Sakellaropoulos (www.bioarmonia.gr). From 2012 until today we have been honored with many and repeated international awards, reaching a unique number of 400 international awards which is a world record for a Greek olive producer.
– Are any of these awards considered more important?
Our participation and award in competitions with the highest cycles around the world is a confirmation of our effort in the highest possible quality. It is the proof and the passport for the markets of the world.
We compete internationally for companies and producers from countries such as Italy, Spain, Tunisia, France, Morocco, Turkey, USA, Argentina, Chile and many others.
It is very difficult to single out our most important awards, but semantically I mention these Greece had never reached until today, as a country, mainly in the world ranking of olive oils.
The culmination is the conquest of the first five places by our five gastronomic olive oils, in the best of the world in their category, based on the EVOOWR world ranking for 2021, creating a new record of points (in order: Majestic Blend Evoo, Masterpiece Blend Evoo, Oleoastron Gourmet Evoo, Flavored Gourmet Enigma and Syllektikon Gourmet Evoo).
The special point of reference is that among 16,584 olive oils, from 2105 companies and from 37 countries of the world, our organic Agoureo oil was ranked in the TOP 10 best olive oils of Koroneiki variety in the world for 2021, while our organic olive oils for the Tribal Primary and Harmonic consecutive year in “Olive oils of the year 2021” (EVOO’S of the YEAR 2021).
It is noteworthy that in the last five years, our olive oils have been found three times in the 1st place in the world and twice in the 2nd place in their category in the world ranking of olive oils, while especially in 2018 was the first time in history that Greek olive oil and Greece as a country which produces it reached 1st place in the olive oil category worldwide.
It is a great distinction and a special honor for us to rank our olive products in the top positions in the world and proven to belong to the global elite of gourmet foods.
The olive oils and table olives of your olive grove are now passed through major universities, such as Yale and Harvard, with clinical research and studies. How are Greek functional foods “utilized” in such studies?
We have focused, with scientific documentation and international recognition, on the production of high quality functional foods, ie foods that have proven effects on human health. Today, our organic olive oils are being used in the three-year Mediterranean Intervention Study, launched by Harvard University and the School of Public Health, on the daily diet of 1,000 volunteer firefighters at 44 fire stations in the United States.
At the same time, the organic reeds of our olive groves participate exclusively in the research entitled “Olives for Health”, conducted by researchers from the School of Public Health of Yale University in America, in collaboration with researchers from the Department of Cardiology, Yale Medical School . .
The purpose of these studies is to assess the effects on human health that result from the daily consumption of our organic oil products. Also important is the first clinical study of EKPA on the positive effect of daily consumption of reed olives of our olive groves on the lipid profile of healthy volunteers and in particular on the LDL / HDL cholesterol ratio and the protection of the cardiovascular system.
At the same time, a second clinical study was conducted, from 2017 to 2021, in which more than 100 patient volunteers participated and the results of which will be announced very soon.
The impressive results of the clinical studies, with the daily intake of only 5 of our organic olives, allowed the research team of the School of Pharmacy of EKPA to convert the olives of Sakellaropoulos olives in the form of powder into a capsule with an international patent, to reduce it.
– You started 30 years ago the … marathon road in organic olive growing. Does the accumulated experience allow you to estimate-predict the future of olives and olive oil from Greece to abroad?
Overseas markets and exports have never been easy, they have more competition and – unfortunately or fortunately – only the best can survive in such a marathon. As all modern statistics and our personal experience show, we are now convinced that internationally they value and turn to particular products and especially to organic functional foods, quality foods with a specific identity.
This identity and therefore the added value given to gourmet products must be practical. Either with the special analyzes, international awards and distinctions, recognized qualities such as health claims, clinical studies, special characteristics and combinatorial uniqueness.
Thus, products that have innovations, special features and recognized quality can be assured of greater convenience, as they give a plethora of “guarantees” to the consumer to choose and supply them. This is the plan and the course we want to follow as Sakellaropoulos organic olive groves in the future. We remain faithful to the path we set out about 30 years ago and we are evolving, without deviating.