PDO Riviera Ligure oil protects and safeguards the Taggiasca and other ligurian varieties

New provisions on varietal compositions, geographical references, label indications, sensory profile and packaging

Positive feedback from Regione Liguria and the Protection Consortium

 Major news in the olive oil sector, to the advantage of producers and end consumers. Following the decision of the European Union and its recent publication in the Gazzetta Ufficiale, the new PDO Riviera Ligure EVO product specification has officially come into force. These regulations will allow greater protection and valorisation of Ligurian oil, which is produced in the olive groves of 186 regional municipalities.


With respect to the previous regulations, the compulsory varietal compositions for specific territories are superseded and geographical references are made optional. This implies that it will be allowed to produce a PDO oil with the different local cultivars, used either singularly or jointly. As for labelling, the indication of the name of the variety/varieties will be allowed, provided the size of the font is not larger than that of the designation.

The label may also indicate the geographical reference – Riviera dei Fiori, Riviera del Ponente Savonese or Riviera di Levante – on condition that the olives are produced and processed in the specific sub-area.


Furthermore, the new document features the definition of a single, broader sensory profile for Riviera Ligure PDO oil. This will enable the provision of oils with different intensities of fruitiness – bitter, spicy and sweet -, according to the needs of producers and the characteristics of the harvest year. Provisions for packaging state that it will be permitted to use all the containers allowed by general regulations, not only glass bottles. Additionally, it will be allowed to package PDO Riviera Ligure oil with different mentions within the territory encompassing the three geographical references. A major innovation that will foster the development of Liguria’s different olive-growing territories, as it will allow businesses to purchase olives and oil within the entire production area and package a PDO oil with or without a geographical reference.


The feedback expressed by the Vice-President of Regione Liguria, Alessandro Piana, and the President of the PDO Riviera Ligure EVO Protection Consortium, Carlo Siffredi, is positive.

“The new production specification released in the Gazzetta Ufficiale,” says Alessandro Piana, vice-president of Regione Liguria in charge of Agriculture and Territorial Marketing, “is an all-embracing tool, aiming to protect and promote all Ligurian olive varieties as well as a broader sensory profile, which mirrors the evolving needs of consumers, and meets demand providing an oil of officially recognised value, an ambassador of local biodiversity. Thus, the necessary rigidity of protection regulations reconciled with flexibility, a concoction that further encourages decisions and business dynamism of Ligurian producers. I am sure that this target – met through constant dialogue with the Protection Consortium, the Associations, the Made in Quality Certification Body, and the producers – will boost a sector with which Liguria identifies, a landmark of territorial and landscape protection, and a significant socio-economic factor.

“After years of work and investment, we reached this important goal.’ adds Carlo Siffredi, President of the Protection Consortium, ‘These amendments will help us protect and promote the oil produced from Ligurian cultivars such as Taggiasca, Arnasca, Pignola, Lavagnina and Razzola. By choosing bottles with the yellow numbered Protection Consortium bottleneck label, consumers will enjoy a total guarantee about the origin, traceability and quality of the authentic and refined Ligurian oil’.


Fact sheet

PDO RIVIERA LIGURE DOP extra virgin olive oil (with or without a geographical reference) is obtained from olive groves located in the production area of the different local varieties: Arnasca, Carparina, Castelnovina, Colombaia, Cozzanina, Cozzanone, Fiandola, Frantoio, Finalina, Lantesca (or Mattea, Pertegara), Lavagnina, Leccino, Liccione (or Lizzone, Olivastrone), Merlina, Mortellina, Mortina, Negrea, Nostrale, Olivella, Olivotto, Pignola, Prempesa (or Principina), Razzola, Rondino, Rossese, Taggiasca (or Gentile, Giuggiolina), Taggiasca di Feglino, Toso.

The PDO oil, with or without a geographical reference, can be produced provided its profil meets these indicators:

descriptors for organoleptic assessment (COI/T.20/Doc.22):

in the organoleptic assessment the median of the defects must be = 0

fruity: median ≥ 3.0

pungent: median ≤ 5.0

bitter: median ≤ 4.5

sweet: median ≥ 2.0;

total maximum acidity expressed in oleic acid (weight): must not exceed gr 0.5 per 100 grams of oil;

number of peroxides: ≤ 17 MeqO2/Kg

K232 ≤ 2,30

K270 ≤ 0,16