Grasas y Aceites, Vol 67, No 4 (2016)

Official quality controls and the fight against fraud in the olive oil sector in Catalonia. Results 2011–2014

G. Cugat
Deputy Director-General for Agri-food Inspection and Control, Directorate-General for Food, Quality and Agri-food Industries. Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food. Government of Catalonia, Spain

M. R. Biel
Agri-food Inspector, Subdirectorate-General for Agri-food Inspection and Control, Directorate-General for Food, Quality and Agri-food Industries, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food, Government of Catalonia, Spain


This article highlights the key aspects of the official control procedures concerning quality and in the fight against food fraud in the oil sector implemented in Catalonia by the Ministry for Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food of the Government of Catalonia and, more specifically, by the Subdirectorate General of Agri-food Inspection and Control. This summarized view focuses on issues related to the legality and competence framework for official controls, the goals and purpose thereof, the area’s object of investigation and technical scope, the stages of the food chain at which measures are carried out, the types of inspection and control actions and the main investigation techniques. It also presents the results of the inspections, with a summary of the types of irregularities detected in the olive oil sector over the 2011–2014 period.


Food fraud; Inspection; Official control; Oil; Quality

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Ministry of Agriculture, 2014. Livestock, Fisheries and Food. Secretariat General. Agriculture of Food Studies and Outlook. Agricultural crop areas and productions.

Ministry of Agriculture, 2012. Livestock, Fisheries and Food. Report on the agri-food industry, distribution and consumption in Catalonia.

European Parliament, 2013. Report on the food crisis, fraud in the food chain and the control thereof (2013/2091 (INI)) 4-12-2103.

EC, 2004. Regulation (EC) No 882/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 29 April 2004 on official controls performed to ensure the verification of compliance with feed and food law, animal health and animal welfare rules (OJEU L165 30-04-2004).

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Catalan Law 14/2003, of 13 June, on agri-food quality (DOGC 3915 1-07-2003).

EC, 1991. Commission Regulation (EC) No 2568/91 of 11 July 1991 on the characteristics of olive oil and olive-residue oil and on the relevant methods of analysis (OJ L248 5-09-1991).

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