loader image


The CEQ Consortium supports all operators in the supply chain in the continuous improvement of the extra virgin olive oils quality placed on the market and in training a good storage and administration practices to maintain the highest possible quality.

Who we are

The Consortium to Guarantee Quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil, established in 2001, is a non-profit association, already recognized with DM Mipaaf on 6 December 2005 and again recognized with DM Mipaaf on 29 November 2016 pursuant to and for the effects of Legislative Decree 51/2015, converted into Law 91/2015.

The Consortium today represents the only Italian Interprofessional organization recognized and operating in the olive sector, pursuant to and for the purposes of articles 157 and 158 of EU Regulation no. 1308/2013 of 17 December 2013.

The Interprofessional Organization, based on its statutory provisions and taking into account consumers needs and interests, aims to achieve the objectives determined by EU and Italian regulations, concerning inter-professional issues in the olive oil and olives and table olive sector for the whole national territory.

The agricultural component

  • Alliance of Italian Cooperatives in the Agri-food sector: combines over 5,000 cooperatives of AGCI, Confcooperative and Legacoop;
  • Confagricoltura: it is the oldest organization for agricultural enterprises protection and representation, with over 240 thousand agricultural enterprises, including about 150,000 olive farms;
  • Italian Farmers Confederation: it is one of the largest interbranch organizations in Europe, with about 900 thousand members, including about 150,000 olive farms;
  • Copagri: is a general vocational agricultural organization, which has over 650,000 members, including around 56,000 olive farms

The commercial component

  • Federation of Oil Trade: it is the largest Italian interbranch organization in the wholesale and olive oil packaging sector, with about 200 associated oil companies.


Play Video

Play Video
Play Video

Play Video

Play Video
Play Video

Play Video


The new scientific discoveries show that extra virgin olive oil needs a lot of attention, not only in the phases of cultivation of the olives in the field and oil extraction in the mill, but also during storage. As soon as the oil is produced, an irreversible process of decay begins which tends to reduce its nutritional properties, vitamins and antioxidants in particular, as well as to reduce the potential of the flavours and aromas.

With the help of an authoritative scientific committee, the CEQ Consortium is continually committed to developing tools and actions to assist the operators of the supply chain in the continuous improvement of the quality of the extra virgin olive oils placed on the market and to inform and train distributors and restaurateurs on the best practices to preserve and administer the extra virgin oils with the highest possible quality.

The goal is to create a common feeling that the extra virgin oils are not all the same and that the richness in antioxidants and sensory fragrances is an extremely valuable quality that requires a lot of commitment and professionalism to be obtained and guaranteed until the act of consumption.

Play Video


The Consortium, operating in accordance with art. 157 and 158 of EU Regulation no. 1308/2013 of December 17, 2013, aims to safeguard, enhance, guarantee, promote, improve and protect quality extra virgin olive oil and table olives, as well as enhance and safeguard products with a designation of origin.

Specifically, the Consortium pursues the following objectives, taking into account their members and consumers interests:

  1. contribute to improve coordination of how products are placed on the market, in particular through market research and studies;
  2. explore potential export markets;
  3. optimally exploit the potential of the products, including market opportunities, and develop initiatives aimed to strengthening economic competitiveness and innovation;
  4. provide information and carry out the necessary research to innovate, rationalize, improve and guide the production and where appropriate, the transformation and / or commercialisation toward more suited products for the market needs and for the consumers taste and expectations, with particular regard to the products quality, such as the peculiarities of products with protected designation of origin or protected geographical indication, and to the environmental protection;
  5. seeking ways of limiting the use of animal health or phytosanitary products, to better manage other production factors, ensure the quality of products and the protection of soil and water, to strengthen the food health safety, in particular through the traceability of products and to improve animal health and welfare;
  6. develop methods and tools for improving product quality at all stages of the production and, where appropriate, the processing and commercialization;
  7. carry out any measure aimed at defending, protecting and promoting organic agriculture and designations of origin, quality labels and the geographical indications;
  8. promote and carry out research on integrated and sustainable production or other environmentally friendly production methods;
  9. promote consumption and provide information regarding products on the internal and external market.


Numerous activities and initiatives have emerged over the years from the fruitful comparison with the various interlocutors of the supply chain, both on a national and on a cross-border level, which have materialized in promotional programs, in the continuous comparison with the various university realities and in the participation in more distinctly social initiatives.

OI activities program under Regg. (UE) 611-615/14.

The CEQ is the beneficiary of a program of activities in the olive sector according to Reg. (UE) 611/14 and Reg. 615/14 and amendments for the three-year period 2018-2021. The CEQ, by resuming and expanding the activities successfully developed in the previous planning periods, intends to expand its control system of compliance with the rules of authenticity, quality and marketing of olive oil, guaranteeing an increase in the level of interaction among all parties involved in the supply chain and carrying out a series of outreach initiatives aimed at increasing the consumer awareness level.

In summary, the program includes the following activities:

  • design and management of the control system, on the entire supply chain up to the store shelf, to comply with the standards of authenticity, quality and marketing of olive oil;
  • application of the CEQ Product Specification (DTP STP 111) on the shareholders’ product;
  • increase the trust and reliability of the supply chain level by spreading the Quality Sharing web platform among operators;
  • organization of periodic conferences and outreach meetings;
  • participation in trade fairs.
Promotion project 1
Play Video

Olive oil and table olives


Extra virgin olive oil
Superior category olive oil obtained directly from olives and solely by mechanical processes
Maximum free acidity, expressed as oleic acid, of 0.8%
Virgin olive oil
Olive oil obtained directly from olives and solely by mechanical processes
Maximum free acidity, expressed as oleic acid, of 2%
Lampante olive oil
Maximum free acidity, expressed as oleic acid, higher than 2%.
Olive oil obtained from refining virgin olive oil
Maximum free acidity, expressed as oleic acid, of 0.3%
Olive oil obtained by blending refined olive oil with virgin olive oil other than lampante oil
Maximum free acidity, expressed in oleic acid, of 1%.
Oil obtained from olive pomace by treatment with solvents or by physical processes, or oil corresponding to lampante olive oil.
Oil obtained from refining crude olive pomace oil.
Maximum free acidity, expressed as oleic acid, of 0.3%
Oil obtained by cutting refined pomace oil and virgin olive oil other than lampante olive oil
Maximum free acidity, expressed in oleic acid, of 1%.
Source: elaboration from REGULATION (CE) N. 1234/2007 OF THE COUNCIL of 22 October 2007
For a complete overview of the chemical parameters of olive oil, please refer to COMMISSION DELEGATED REGULATION (EU) 2015/1830 of 8 July 2015

World varieties:

Albania:  Kalinjot.

Algeria:   Azeradj, Blanquette de Guelma, Chemlal de Kabylie, Limli, Sigoise.

Argentina: Arauco

Cile: Azapa

Cyprus: Ladoelia

Croazia: Lastovka, Levantika, Oblica

Egypt: Aggezi Shami, Hamed, Toffahi

France: Aglandau, Bouteillan, Grossane, Lucques, Picholine Languedoc, Salonenque, Tanche

Jordan: Ras’i

Greece: Adramitini, Amigdalolia, Chalkidiki, Kalamon, Konservolia, Koroneiki, Mastoidis, Megaritiki, Valanolia.

Israel: Barnea, Kadesh, Merhavia.

Italy: Ascolana Tenera, Biancolilla, Bosana, Canino, Carolea, Casaliva, Cassanese, Cellina di Nardò, Coratina, Cucco, Dolce Agogia, Dritta, Frantoio, Giarraffa, Grignan, Itrana, Leccino, Majatica di Ferrandina, Moraiolo, Nocellara del Belici, Nocellara Etnea, Ogliarola Barese, Oliva di Cerignola, Ottobriatica, Pendolino, Pisciottana, Pizz’e Carroga, Rosciola, Santa Caterina, Sant’Agostino, Taggiasca. 

YugoslaviaR.F: Žutica

Lebanon: Soury

Morocco: Haouzia, Menara, Meslala, Picholine marocaine.

Palestine: Nabali Baladi.

Portugal: Carrasquenha, Cobrançosa, Cordovil de Castelo, Branco, Cordovil de Serpa, Galega Vulgar, Maçanilha Algarvia, Redondal. 

Syria: Abou-Satl, Doebli, Kaissy, Sorani, Zaity.

Slovenia: Banchera.

Spain: Alfafara, Aloreña, Arbequina, Bical, Blanqueta, Callosina, Carrasqueño de la Sierra, Castellana, Changlot Real, Cornicabra, Empeltre, Farga, Gordal del Granada, Gordal Sevillana, Hojiblanca, Lechín de Granada, Lechín de Sevilla, Loaime, Lucio, Manzanilla Cacereña, Manzanilla de Sevilla, Manzanilla Prieta, Mollar de Cieza, Morisca, Morona, Morrut, Palomar, Picual, Picudo, Rapasayo, Royal de Cazorla, Sevillenca, Verdial de Badajoz, Verdial de Huevar, Verdial de Vélez-Málaga, Verdiell, Villalonga.

United States: Mission

Tunisia: Chemlali de Sfax, Chétoui, Gerboui, Meski, Oueslati.

Turkey: Ayvalik, Çekişte, Çelebi, Domat, Erkence, Gemlik, Izmir Sofralik, Memecik, Memeli, Uslu.

Play Video

PDO and PGI:

In the European oil scene, Italy boasts the largest number of PDO olive oils, 42, in addition to 5 PGI.

Below is a classification by region of PDOs and PGIs

The international legislation on the marketing of table olives refers to the COI, Trade standard applicable to table olives COI/OT/NC n.1 of December 2004 which repeals the unified qualitative standard applicable to table olives in international trade T/ OT / Doc. 15 of 2 October 1980, revised in 1981, and the Codex Alimentarius (CODEX STAN 66-1981 and subsequent revisions). The national legislation on marketing is part of the more general legislation on food preserves.

According to the provisions of the IOC, the term “table olives” applies to products:

  1. Prepared with healthy fruits from cultivated olive trees (Olea europaea L.) belonging to varieties suitable for the production of table fruits, chosen taking into account the following criteria: volume, shape, good pulp-to-pit ratio, fine pulp, good consistency and flavour, with pit easily detachable from the pulp;
  2. Undergoing treatment of debittering and preserved through natural fermentation or heat treatment, with or without preservatives;
  3. Packaged with or without preserving liquid.

Based on the degree of ripeness, table olives meet the following classification:

  1. Green olives: fruits picked during the ripening cycle, before veraison and when they have reached normal size;
  2. Olives turning colour: fruits harvested before complete ripeness, at the time of veraison;
  3. Black olives: fruits picked when they have reached full ripeness, or shortly before.

Among the numerous cultivars that can be counted worldwide we find, just to name a few, Sevillana and Manzanilla (Spain), Galega (Portugal), Kalamata (Greece), Domat and Gemlit (Turkey), Picholine Marocaine (Morocco), Mission (USA), Meski (Tunisia) Jlott (Syria), Sigoise (Algeria).

The Italian market also has an abundant variety, consisting of, among others, by: Taggiasca, Ogliarola, Moresca, Tonda, Nocellara, St. Catherine, Ascolana tenera, Bella di Cerignola, Carolea, Dolce di Melfi.

Furthermore, the following PDOs belong to Italy:

Nocellare del Belice
EC Reg. 134/1998 (Official Gazette Ce L 15/6 of 21.1.1998)
Bella della Daunia
EC Reg. 1904/2000 (Official Gazette Ce L 228/57 of 8.9.2000)
Oliva ascolana del Piceno
EC Reg. 1855/2005 (Official Journal of the EU L 297/5 of 15.11.2005)
Oliva di Gaeta
EC Reg. 2252/2016 (Ue Official Journal L 340/47 of 15.12.2016

Supply chain coordination

The Consortium, as an interbranch organization, starting from the belief that the olive production chain needs vertical coordination to maximize its efficiency, has developed a control system that favours the dialogue and the achievement of uniform quality standards among the various operators in the olive world, allowing the sharing of a series of services, tools and information aimed at improving quality.

The Consortium, through specific monitoring, analysis, evaluation programs and the understanding of the qualitative dynamics of the supply chain downstream phases, aims to create a synergistic relationship between all the parties involved in the supply chain, up to the large-scale distribution which is one of the critical points of the current supply chains, that is the excessive dependence on the GDO dictated rules.

The coordination of the entire supply chain is through the implementation of a web platform aimed at developing new paradigms for the domestic oil supply that has always been historically based on territorial relationships and turnkey services research. The platform is used above all as a centralized collector of information relating to the quality of homogeneous masses subject to CEQ certification and as a function of developing a new approach for a dialogue between operators upstream and downstream of the supply chain.

In terms of dialogue with the Organized Distribution, the Consortium has always been committed to disseminating quality standards and rigorous ethical behaviours towards operators downstream of the supply chain.

Ricerche di mercato

L’analisi del mercato interno e dei mercati esteri permette di cogliere le principali dinamiche del settore e i suoi trend evolutivi più significativi.

La ricerca

Il Consorzio promuove e sostiene iniziative e progetti di ricerca che incrementino la conoscenza delle caratteristiche qualitative, nutrizionali e salutari degli oli extra vergini di oliva di qualità, nonché delle migliori tecniche di produzione, di trasformazione e di conservazione.

La certezza di poter assicurare ai consumatori e agli operatori oli extra vergini di oliva sempre qualitativamente migliori dipende, in larga parte, anche dalla stretta collaborazione tra il mondo scientifico e quello della produzione nella messa a punto di metodologie e strumenti sempre più efficaci per migliorare i processi di produzione.

Le straordinarie proprietà nutrizionali e salutari dell’olio extra vergine di oliva, che la ricerca scientifica ha evidenziato, vanno capillarmente diffuse presso i consumatori e gli operatori, continuamente alimentate e arricchite.

A tal fine, il Consorzio collabora con il mondo della ricerca per definire nuovi programmi e divulgare i risultati del dibattito scientifico, utili a far crescere e diffondere la cultura dell’olio extra vergine lungo tutta la filiera sino ai consumatori.

The Consortium