Publication of an application for registration pursuant to Article 6(2) of Regulation (EEC) No 2081/92 on the protection of geographical indications and designations of origin

Official Journal C 321 , 31/12/2003 P. 0045 - 0048

Publication of an application for registration pursuant to Article 6(2) of Regulation (EEC) No 2081/92 on the protection of geographical indications and designations of origin

(2003/C 321/10)

This publication confers the right to object to the application pursuant to Articles 7 and 12d of the abovementioned Regulation. Any objection to this application must be submitted via the competent authority in a Member State, in a WTO member country or in a third country recognised in accordance with Article 12(3) within a time limit of six months from the date of this publication. The arguments for publication are set out below, in particular under 4.6, and are considered to justify the application within the meaning of Regulation (EEC) No 2081/92.



PDO (x) PGI ( )

National application No: 8/2001

1. Responsible department in Member State Name: Ministero delle Politiche agricole e forestali

Address: Via XX Settembre, 20 - I-00187 Roma

Tel. (39-06) 481 99 68

Fax (39-06) 42 01 31 26

E-mail: qualita@politicheagricole.it

2. Applicant group Name: Associazione Produttori Olivicoli delle Province di Lucca e Massa Carrara ASSOPROL - Lucca-Massa Carrara

Address: Via delle Tagliate, 370 - I-55100 Lucca

Composition: Producers/processors (x) other ( ).

3. Type of product: Group 1.5 - Oils and fats - Extra virgin olive oil.

4. Specification (Summary of requirements under Article 4(2))

4.1. Name: "Lucca"

4.2. Description: Extra virgin olive oil with the following characteristics:

- colour: yellow with green lights of varying intensity;

- odour: slight to moderate of olive fruitiness;

- taste: sweet with a hot and bitter taste derived from the intensity of the fruitiness detected;

- panel test: > 7;

- total acidity, in oleic acid by weight, not more than 0,5 grams per 100 grams of oil;

- peroxide number: max 12 Meq O2/kg;

- oleic acid > 72 %;

- linoleic acid 5-9 %;

- linolenic acid < 0,9 %;

- total tocopherols not less than 90 mg/litre;

- total polyphenols not less than 100 mg/litre.

4.3. Geographical area: The area of the Region of Tuscany where olives for the production of Lucca extra virgin olive oil are produced and processed includes the municipalities of: Capannori, Lucca, Montecarlo, Altopascio, Porcari, Villa Basilica in the Piana di Lucca area, the municipalities of Camaiore, Massarosa, Viareggio, Forte dei Marmi, Pietrasanta, Serravezza and Stazzema in the Versilia area and the municipalities of Bagni di Lucca, Borgo Mozzano, Pescaglia, Barga, Coreglia Antelminelli and Minucciano in the Media Valle and Garfagnana area, as shown in the specification.

4.4. Proof of origin: The development of agriculture, both production and marketing, in the Lucca area is linked to olive growing. To understand this link, we need to look no further than the fact that in 787 the owner of a good olive grove on a leased farm producing a variety of crops took only the olives in rent for the farm and left the tenant everything else that grew there.

In classical times the province of Lucca was rich in olive groves as is demonstrated by its place names. Some clearly refer to the olive tree, such as "Ulettori", on the hill at Pieve a Elici, "Ulivella" near to Camaiore, "Oliveto" near Arliano and "Olivetecci" near Varno.

The importance of oil production, for food and other purposes increased in the fourteenth century, a time when the whole of Tuscany was trying to increase and protect olive growing.

At local level, laws were being made to regulate precisely behaviour which would influence quality and also identify the varieties most commonly grown. In the province of Lucca some varieties still grown today are recorded. In time, thanks to the skill and persistence of producers, it became possible to market oil.

As the local historian Cesare Sardi notes, Lucca became home to the main oil producing industries and adopted marketing rules forbidding its sale elsewhere without a licence and the fraudulent withholding of oil from the market to get a better price.

Production, processing and bottling are carried out in the designated area. The reasons why bottling is carried out there are concerned with the need to preserve and special characteristics and quality of Lucca oil, ensuring that the checks by the outside body take place in the presence of the producers concerned. For them, the Protected Designation of Origin is of the utmost importance and offers, in accordance with the aims and thrust of the Regulation, an opportunity to increase incomes. Furthermore, that operation is traditionally carried out in the designated geographical area.

To ensure the traceability of the product, producers who intend to market extra virgin oil under this designation must register their olive groves and processing and bottling plants on the lists held and updated by the inspection body.

4.5. Method of production: Lucca extra virgin olive oil is produced from the varieties of olive tree in the olive groves, Frantoio, Frantoiano or Frantoiana up to 90 %, Leccino up to 30 % and other minor varieties up to 15 %.

Cultivation must respect the following techniques:

- pruning must be carried out at least every two years;

- organic and mineral fertilisers must be applied;

- the land must be grassed over or cultivation must be only superficial;

- chemical weedkillers are allowed where the use of machines is impossible;

- plant-health protection, particularly against Bactrocera oleae, must be carried out in accordance with directed programmes laid down by the Consorzio and following regional rules.

The olives are harvested direct from the tree, by hand or using mechanical aids, no later than 31 December of each year.

Maximum production of olives for the production of extra virgin oil may not exceed 7000 kg per hectare in specialist cultivation areas and in groves with mixed cultivation the average production of olive per tree may not exceed 20 kg.

The maximum yield of oil may not exceed 19 %.

Olives must be transported in a way which ensures that they are perfectly preserved. Until milling, which must take place within two days of harvest, the olives must be kept in rigid ventilated containers stored in a cool place.

Olives must be sent to the mill within three days of harvest.

The oil production operations must comply with the time and temperature for crushing, respectively no more than 50 minutes and 28 degrees centigrade. If the olives are very dry, water for dilution at a temperature of not more than 20 degrees centigrade may be used.

4.6. Link: The designated geographical area is generally uniform as regards soil, climate and structure. The area concerned has poor soils, sloping and sometimes terraced, with steep slopes which, uniquely for Tuscany, appear virtually to cling to the sides of the Apennines and the Apuan Alps. The geology, basically Eocene, is varied and includes large amounts of Galestro, Calcare and Albarese rocks.

Rainfall is a climate feature of great importance for the moulding of local olive growing and the proper and successful development of olive groves in this area. Although structural difficulties and problems of access to land do not allow the use of irrigation, the high rainfall (averaging between a minimum of 1058 mm and a maximum of 2008 mm) is sufficient for the cultivation of olives and contributes to the special features of the local product.

In the territory of Lucca, olive trees and oil have always been important not only for the economy but also for lifestyle and social customs. There is a variety of historical evidence linking social and cultural life in the area with olive growing. The connection is demonstrated by the various rules which have over time governed the production and marketing of olive oil from around AD 1000-1200.

Among the various documents which demonstrate that and witness to the link between quality and production and hence to checks that the oil actually came from Lucca, the letter of 1241 (State archive DPIL spedale 24 gennaio 1241) is a prime example referring to the sale of 22 libbre (pounds) of oil which would be reduced to 15 if the olives did not come from a single year's crop, the remaining quantity would be paid the following year.

The special features of oil from Lucca and its organoleptic qualities became clear with the passage of time and the establishment in 1594 of the "Offizio sopra l'olio", a body active in the public economy with the task of regulating export licenses for all oil depending on the harvest, even determining retail prices as a means of regulating the market.

Attention was also paid to production since from 1800 onwards the Accademia dei Georgofili too was active in the scientific and experimental field disseminating the results of research on the commonest diseases affecting olive trees.

4.7. Inspection body Name: CERTIQUALITY - Istituto di certificazione della qualità - Settore Certiagro

Address: Via G. Giardino, 4 - I-20123 Milan.

4.8. Labelling: Extra virgin olive oil must be marketed in containers or bottles with a capacity not exceeding 5 litres.

The labels must bear in clear and indelible letters both the wording required by the rules on labelling and the name "Lucca" as protected designation of origin.

They must also include the graphic symbol with the specific and unmistakable logo, which must be next to the protected designation of origin.

The graphic symbol is in the form of a circle with irregular saw-toothed edges like a wax seal measuring 2 × 2 cm and dark green in colour as described in the specification.

4.9. National requirements: -

EC No: IT/00199/11.06.2001.

Date of receipt of complete application: 9 October 2003.