The search for the “Perfect Food”
What exactly are “natural” foods? And what exactly does “environmentally-friendly” really mean? What impact does food production have on the landscape? Or on the future of our planet? And what about the food choices we make every day? How do they impact our well-being, lifestyle and cultural identity? These, and a host of other questions with no clear-cut right answers, are something millions of consumers more or less consciously ask themselves every day. It is one of the great issues of our times, as we struggle to make sense of vast masses of often complex information.
We are used to hearing about PDO, PGI, organic, locally-sourced, GM, extra virgin and a host of other buzz words, but their meaning isn’t always completely clear to consumers. Yet they are all concepts which play a part in the story of quality European olives and extra virgin olive oil.
There are so many cultural, economic, production and marketing factors underpinning consumer choice that it’s impossible to standardize; it depends on a range of criteria embracing the context, aims, personal approaches to food and diet and the continuous updates in research and production innovation.
However, promoting informed choices by providing full, accurate information remains the gold standard. This is the search for the “Perfect Food”, transforming consumers into pro-active “prosumers” in their food choices. We want to throw the search open to anyone who has a contribution to make on the production methods, processing, packaging, distribution and consumption of olive products, with particular emphasis on environmental impact.
These are complex issues for consumers and the environment alike; issues which can never be encompassed by a single vision, but this approach has the merit of bringing to the attention of the public values all too often overlooked, such as those found in quality European olives and extra virgin olive oils.