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As announced in the August edition, COVID-19 restrictions have meant we’re all meeting up online again for the 2021 Australian National Olive Conference. The program has now been finalised, and registrations are open for all sessions.

Following last year’s popular virtual conference format, the event will comprise two-hour sessions held over four consecutive days, running mid-afternoon from 3-5pm (AEST) each day. This allows delegates to complete a decent day’s work before sitting down for the sessions, with daylight time still available afterwards for a few final chores.

Each session will feature informative presentations from experts within and outside the industry, discussing key issues that impact olive businesses. The interactive online format will provide delegates with the chance to ask questions and contribute comments live.

When: Tuesday, 12 October to Friday, 15 October inclusive

Cost: AOA Members – Free; Non-Members – $30 plus GST per session or $100 plus GST for all sessions.

Program and registration links:

Tuesday, 12 October – The Big Picture (the economy, trade, export, local markets)

The conference kicks off with The Big Picture, looking at the sales side of running an olive business. Providing invaluable insight for future planning, Bendigo Bank economist David Robertson takes a crystal ball to the economy post-pandemic, while Austrade’s Ollie Shugg and Cobram Estate’s Andrew Burgess look at the global market and exports. A local market focus rounds things off, with Mount Zero Olives’ Richard Seymour discussing the practicalities of pivoting amidst rolling lockdowns. Get ready to hear about some really innovative marketing!

Register here

Wednesday, 13 OctoberBiosecurity (Xyllela, fruit fly, other threats)

Day 2 moves into the grove with the focus firmly on Biosecurity, an increasingly important element of grove management. National Xylella Co-ordinator Craig Elliot looks at our industry’s number one disease threat, asking ‘Are you Xylella ready?’ and DPIPWE Tasmania’s Andrew Bishop discusses how the renowned food-producing island maintains its edge around plant biosecurity. There’ll also be discussion around industry pests and disease issues including fruit fly, a growing issue which affected fruit movement for processing during this year’s harvest.

Register here 

Thursday, 14 October – Factors Influencing Olive Yields (frost, biennial bearing, canopy management)

We stay in the grove for the third conference session, looking at some of the most significant factors influencing olive yields – frost, biennial bearing and canopy management. Looking at how and why they affect cropping rates, the expert panel of Paul Miller, Leandro Ravetti and Andrew Taylor also provide practical approaches to managing these issues in your grove.

Register here

Friday, 15 October – Olives and Olive Oil in Food (table olives, cooking with olives, health and wellness)

The fourth and final session moves into the kitchen, focussing on table olives and EVOO in cooking and as part of a healthy lifestyle. Culinary and technical experts including renowned chef and olive afficionado Rosa Matto, oil scientist Claudia Guillaume and dietician Abby Dolphin will join producer Jared Bettio to discuss everything from the versatility of olive products in cooking to the proven health benefits of including more of them in our diets.

Register here 

*Followed at 5:30-7:00pm by 2021 Australian International Olive Awards Virtual Gala Presentation

Wrapping up the event is the chance to celebrate the fruits of this year’s labour at the industry’s ‘night of nights’, the Australian International Olive Awards Virtual Presentation. Gather your team around, grab a cuppa or a glass of bubbles, and join in as 2021’s top EVOO and table olive producers are revealed.

Will you be this year’s Best of Show winner? Register and Zoom in to find out!

FREE registration here 

Or register for the full week of sessions here.