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“BLIND ACCESSIBILITY MARK OF AGRIFOOD PRODUCTS” FOR BLIND PEOPLE
THE CASE STUDY OF eXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL (EVOO)

The “Italian Blind Union ”(an Italian organization for blind people, located in Cosenza, Italy), in order to provide blind consumers of extra virgin olive oil with access to information relating to the product, the producer, the nutritional qualities and general information on the local “Carolea” cultivar, has decided to create a prototype of “Accessibility Mark ” in cooperation with CREA,Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende, Italy a center of excellence in olive tree research, the Oli Tucci farm located in Marcellinara, Italy and the innovative start-up SISSPre s.r.l. from Milan area, Italy.

THE “CAROLEA” cultivar AND EXTRAVIRGIN olive OIL
NUTRITIONAL AND NUTRACEUTICAL CHARACTERISTICS
BY CREA, Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende, Italy
EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL:UPPER CATEGORY OIL OBTAINED DIRECTLY FROM THE OLIVES AND ONLY THROUGH MECHANICAL PROCEDURES

“Armonliva” is a mono-cultivar “Carolea”extra virgin olive oil produced by the Olitucci farm: the quantity of fatty acids present in the nutrition label on 100g of product is the following:

  • 16 g saturated fatty acids
  • 74 g mono-unsaturated fatty acids
  • 10 g poly-unsaturated fatty acids

The history of olive oil is going back very far in the past: it has evolved and still evolves together with the history of humanity. We also find it in the Bible.
In ancient times, it was not used so much as food, but was used for lighting, for medical purposes, for cosmetic purposes, in athletic competitions, in religious functions.

There are many ancient documents that talk about Carolea, a precious cultivar of olive growing at most in Calabria, Italy. The tree leave is wide and long and the trunk is more regular and fast to grow; the largest and most gentle fruit, the sweetest and lightest oil.

The Carolea, whose overall extension in Calabria is in the order of 50,000 hectares, is the predominant cultivar of the entire province of Catanzaro, Calabria, Italy.
The drupe is large, ovoid, asymmetrical. The characteristic umbone is very evident. The maximum coloring that shows the good maturation is completed between December and January. The early and rather concentrated inoculation is completed around November.
It has a good resistance to cold and drought. It is resistant to mange and verticilliosis. It is very sensitive to the oil fly and to the Cycloconio. I t has a dual attitude. The oil yield is high. The ripening is late and scalar, the oil yield varies from 18% to over 22% depending on the time of harvest. It lends itself very well to the mechanical harvesting of olives with the use of shakers with yields between 80 and 95%.

The smell is lightly fruity with a slight odor of other fruit, especially almond and apple; hint of grass, almond and artichoke. Slightly spicy taste on which the bitter sensation predominates.
The olive oil is undoubtedly the main food element of the “Mediterranean Diet”. Excellent for its taste and its high digestibility, it is rich in vegetable fats that together with other molecules of other nature gives it the characteristics of “Nutraceutical Food”. A comparative study conducted by the American physiologist Angel Keys in the ‘50s showed that mortality from ischemic heart disease was much greater in countries where the diet was rich in saturated fat i.e. butter, lard, milk, red meat, while it was very low in countries where diet was rich in vegetable fats.
The nutraceutical properties of the olive oil are undoubtedly to be attributed to particular present molecules, but it is this food itself to be a nutraceutical excellence. The phenolic component has antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties. Their concentration depends on the pedoclimatic conditions, the level of ripeness and the production technique.
Important is the ability of the human body to absorb these molecules, i.e. it depends on the bio-availability.
It fights cholesterol: moderate consumption can reduce excess cholesterol in the blood, does not generate “harmful” LDL cholesterol, and favors the synthesis of the “effective” HDL. It is important for gastro-intestinal function. Proper consumption reduces pathologies such as gastritis and gastric ulcers. It is the most digestible among dietary fats; daily amounts should not exceed 3 tablespoons per day equal to about 30 or 35g. Each spoon has about 90 kilocalories.
The mandatory information on the label, for extra virgin and virgin olive oils, regarding the sales denomination and the designation of the origin must be grouped in the main visual field. The characters and format are provided in accordance with Regulation n. 1169 of 2011. In the case of more type of oils (blend or mixture), the term “mixture” must be indicated. Information on the storage of olive oils is mandatory, away from heat and light. The information regarding to the olive harvesting campaign is optional, which can appear only if 100% of the olives come from the same harvest.
The designation of origin must indicate, for extra virgin olive oil, the country of origin of the olives and oil. If the olives come from a country other than the location of the mill, the designation of origin will bear the indication of the origin of both the olives and the oil.
The olive oil polyphenols contribute to the protection of blood lipids from the oxidative stress. This indication, a claim authorized by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)based in Parma, Italy, can only be used for olive oil that contains at least 5mg of hydroxytyrosol and its derivatives such as oleuropein complex and tyrosol for 20g of olive oil. The indication must be accompanied by information to the consumer that the beneficial effect is obtained with the daily intake of 20g of olive oil.

THE RESEARCH CENTER CREA
Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende, Italy

The Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende, Italy is one of the 12 Centers in which the Council for agricultural research and economics is organized. Reorganization plan and rationalization of the network of territorial divisions pursuant to art. 1 paragraph 381 of law 190 of 23 December 2014.

The Council for agricultural research and economics, a research organization supervised by MIPAAFT (Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies and Tourism), carries out scientific research, technological research, experimentation, knowledge transfer and innovation, information and training activities provided for in the statute. It develops technological solutions capable of raising the profitability and competitiveness of agricultural, agri-food and forestry activities, in a context of sustainability and healthy production, guaranteeing the protection and conservation of natural resources and biodiversity of agricultural, forest and fish ecosystems, based on the objectives and guidelines defined by the Vigilant Ministry or the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies and Tourism (MIPAAFT)

The Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruits born from the merger of the Research Centers for Olive and the Oil Industry of Rende, the Research Center for Tree Fruit in Rome and the Research Center for Agriculture and the Mediterranean Crops of Acireale.

Although recently established, it embodies all the experiences and skills both in the field of research and the dissemination of knowledge and scientific information that the individual centers that constitute it have acquired over the years.

The CREA, Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics,develops and favors the adoption of technological innovation in the productive sectors also in collaboration with the Italian Regional Authorities, the Provinces, the Universities, the research institutes and the associations of producers and consumers; it carries out and supports research on technological quality and traceability of production and consumer protection; it carries out certification, testing and accreditation activities also aimed at certification, nutritional labeling and enhancement of the specificities of national territories; it favors, develops and carries out dissemination and scientific information activities and integrates knowledge from different areas of research in order to ensure timeliness in the transfer of results.

SISSPre s.r.l
PRECISION SYSTEMS AND SERVICES

SISSPre s.r.l., Precision Systems and Services, is a Start up established in Milan area in the second half of 2016 by Emilia Proserpio and Fabio Mario Scalise.

At the beginning of 2015, Fabio Mario Scalise decided to start, in cooperation with the CREA, Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende , an important restructuring of a historic olive trees property of the Scalise family, located in Calabria between Catanzaro and Lamezia Terme, in order to resume the production and sale of high quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO).

The property consists of 10 hectares with about 900 olive trees of local “Carolea” cultivar.

Cooperation with CREA, Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende, highlighted that traceability “from field to table” was fundamental to be able to provide the consumer with a tool that would allow him to consciously choose what to put on his table.

In the second part of 2016, to support the project, the innovative start-up SISSPre was established.

Thanks to his engineering experience and the cooperation of colleagues and partners, the founder, Fabio Mario Scalise, has conceived TRUST THREE – a completely automatic and non-manipulable traceability system –“from the tree to the consumer’s table”.

TRUST THREE creates and adapts innovative technologies that, from the field to the table, guarantee the trust of any operation performed.

With the automatic recording of every operation carried out in real time by the actors of the supply chain, TRUST THREE is able to guarantee the non-manipulation of the information.

In this way it is also proposed to fight frauds and make available to consumers the best of genuine and typical Italian products.

Specific software programs are able to detect any anomaly, such as errors or frauds, along the supply chain and to prevent a batch of product from being placed on the market if it does not meet predefined criteria of quality and traceability.

Traceability data, which demonstrate the authenticity and origin of the product, will be accessible to the consumer via their smart-phone when they will have to purchase a bottle of olive oil from a retailer.

The consumer smart-phone will be able to access the data archive via a TAG or QR Code affixed to the package.

Dates, times, geographical coordinates of the place and bottling may be displayed and these data will no longer be editable.

Conceived so far for the extra virgin olive oil supply chain, it has already been developed to be used in any food supply chain to provide a secure traceability mechanism.

SISSPre is located in Milan area, has an operational headquarters in Marcellinara (Catanzaro, Calabria, Italy), where, within the Oli Tucci company premises, there is the SISSPre Southern Italy Testing Field.

OLITUCCI - INNOVATIVE AGRICULTURAL farm

“OliTucci Innovative Agricultural Farm” was born from a dream of Guglielmo Scalise, soldier and scholar, who, emigrating to the North at the beginning of the 20th century, never stopped maintaining a solid bond with his own land, Calabria in the South of Italy.

He bought a property with olive tree fields, a small citrus tree field and a farmhouse not far from Marcellinara (Catanzaro, Italy) and then built more farmhouses dedicated to farming activity and homes for farmers.

Thanks to the hard work of the local farmers who handed down their skills and knowledge in the cultivation of olives over the years, the property was enriched with new olive oil fields up to the current 17 hectares, of which 10 are olive trees field.

The land extends in the country of Calabria region in “Contrada Licari”, at the gates of the town of Marcellina; it is divided into two bodies, the first of which (about 10 hectares) comprising the rural houses, a part of the olive fields,the citrus field and the oak woods and cork oaks, the second entirely dedicated to olive trees that covers about 7 hectares.

Most of the olive trees are of the “Carolea” cultivar, that is native of that territory.

The story now goes on with Fabio, the grandson, who with the same passion in 2015 decided to reorganize the property according to the most innovative methodologies. He turned to CREA, Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende, Center of excellence in studies on the olive supply chain, to undertake a process of agronomic reorganization of the company.

After less than a year, a high quality extra virgin olive oil “Armonliva” was produced and the property was entrusted to the expert hands of his friend Paolo Tucci.

The evaluation of the 2017 Armonliva extra virgin olive oil provided by professional tasters of the CREA, Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende, gave the following response:

The oil has a fruity green olive with strong hints of bitter almond and wild herbs with a slight hint of aromatic.To the taste initially the bitter almond is imposed followed by the wild rocket, from the field herbs.It embellishes the whole with a slight but lasting note of oregan.

Bitter and spicy are decisive and persistent.

The farm has ancient roots not only because it was born from the dream of an emigrant in love with his own land of origin, but above all because it extends in a territory that is historically devoted to the cultivation of olive trees. It now lives a second youth. The target is now to produce a very high quality extra virgin olive oil dedicated to the “premium” market. To this goal, it is proposed to act in three directions:

1) Use the best agronomic practices to improve the quality of the finished product, favoring quality over oil yield. To this goal, cooperations with research institutes on the olive supply chain have been consolidated and will be expanded in the future, for example with the CREA, Research Centre for Olive, Citrus and Tree Fruit, Council for agricultural research and economics, Rende.

2) Use “Precision Olive Farming” practices aimed at maximizing the quality of the product and preserving the soil that produces it in view of an eco-sustainability of resources, preserving over time the fertility of the soil and environmental resources (primarily the water resource). To this goal, cooperations will be established with various research institutions in Italy and worldwide.

3) Complete traceability of the production chain “from the field to the consumer”; The Olitucci farm proposes itself as a “field of experimentation” for the implementation of a complete automatic and electronic traceability system, in cooperation with the innovative start-up SISSPre srl, Italian Society for Precision Systems and Services.

UICI - ITALIAN BLIND union OF CALABRIA (ONLUS)

The Italian Blind Union (ONLUS) with its territorial sections (Province Sections), appointed“Moral Entity” with RD of 29 July 1923 n. 1789, is registered both on the National Register of NGOs and on the one of the Social Promotion Associations.

UICI Province Section of Cosenza was opened in 1943 as an interprovincial section. The direct assistance activities are mainly aimed at blind people in the Province of Cosenza, more than 2500, but some services such as the Parlato Book, the Tiflotecnico Center, the Professional Training, the Prevention of blindness, are also used by blind people in other Italian provinces.

Among the aims pursued by the Union, the health prevention activity is particularly important. The Section carries out prevention campaigns in collaboration with various volunteer specialists.

The Union of Cosenza, always sensitive to the problems related to the isolation in which many of its members and non-members pay, has stipulated an agreement with the Presidency of the Council of Ministers – National Office for Civil Service, to dispose of the work of the Volunteers of the Civil Service employed to solve the problem of freedom of movement of the carriers of a difficulty.

The Braille Press Center is active at the Cosenza headquarters, in which school texts of every order and degree, magazines and fiction texts are translated into Braille language. The members of the association can request the transcription of any type of text and receive the same within a limited period of time.

The Braille Library of the Union located at the National Library of Cosenza houses around 1200 volumes. The texts can be consulted free of charge both in the reading room of the Library and on loan.

The National Spoken Book Center is a free UICI service. It is one of the main channels of access to culture also for all those people who, due to advanced age or various pathologies, have reading difficulties.

Also essential is the activity of the “Sound Printing” Section which, with the invaluable collaboration of voluntary readers (UNIVOC), periodically records and sends magazines useful for updating in various cultural, scientific and professional fields.

In the “Annunziata”Civil Hospital in Cosenza, the “Parlato in Corsia” Book was created. Patients can ask our Civil Service Volunteers for books and a portable recorder to listen to them.

The need of support devices for the right integration of subjects with visual difficulties is answered by the Show Room of the National Typhlotechnic Center, which provides information and updates on new technologies for accessibility.

Primary role is the promotion of rehabilitation activities among the associates. To this end, UICI organizes rehabilitation, diving and sport courses with the potential of which experimentation is evolving as a candidate to play a significant role in rehabilitation techniques.

UICI has created the sports association “Over Sport”, the first sports association for the disabled in the province of Cosenza, which “has as its primary purpose the promotion, dissemination, coordination and experimentation of sports activities among physical handicaps, sport blinds and mental handicaps, for competitive, educational, rehabilitative and cultural recreational purposes” (from the Statute of the Association Over Sport – ONLUS).