Eryn Balch spent five years with Sovena USA, one of the largest American
importers of olive oil, before she joined the Trade Association of
Olive Oil Importers, the North American Olive Oil Association, as its
executive vice president in 2012.
Eryn always has a lot going on. The trade group works on behalf of its
members on legislative and regulatory issues, monitors olive oil quality
in its testing program, and once in a while calls out brands that don’t
make the grade.
Eryn was in the news most recently when her
office sued TV’s Dr. Oz for what it called his false and careless words
that have discouraged millions of people from using a product with
scientifically demonstrated advantages.
"The NAOOA is actually, it’s a trade association for sellers and
marketers of olive oil in the US and Canada, so one of the things that
is different about our association is that we’re not linked to any
specific country or region or grade of olive oil. We’re open to any
company that wants to market olive oils in North America and agrees to
follow the IOC standards as well as industry supporters, so in addition
to some of the things you just mentioned we have two primary areas of
activity. One is monitoring the market and testing olive oils and
working to enforce the IOC standards, and the other very important area
is promoting olive oil consumption, so promoting all olive oil
consumption." explained Ms Blanch.
"Who are your members?" asked Curtis Cord.
"Today our members represent about 60% of all the olive oil consumed in
the US, big and small companies, major brands, retail brands,
food-service brands, private label suppliers, bulk and industrial
suppliers, so a mix of all of the players in the category that are
bringing olive oil to US consumers." said Ms Blanch. More