Taste Lancashire Ambassador and Agrichef Maurizio Bocchi successfully launched his Extra Virgin Olive Oil for a Healthier Future campaign at his Ribble Valley restaurant, La Locanda on Monday 18th September 2023.

Olive oil has been on our supermarket shelves and in our kitchens for many years. A staple ingredient that is gaining increasing attention in the media and on cookery shows.

Speaking at the event, Agrichef Maurizio Bocchi said:

“There has been one key component which has inspired my culinary journey as a chef. It is always at the core of my cooking and that ingredient is the highest quality, extra virgin olive oil. An integral ingredient at the heart of Italian cooking for millenia, and to understand why, is to unravel the deeper benefits of this superfood ingredient.”

As well as enjoying an olive oil inspired lunch created by Agrichef Maurizio, speakers took guests on a journey of discovery - addressing the health benefits of a Mediterranean diet; and most importantly introducing Extra Virgin Olive Oil (or EVOO) as a sixth element of the daily diet. Certainly, it could be described as the nectar of the gods:

Elisabetta Gabrielloni from Frantoio Gabrielloni in Italy hosted olive oil tasting and spoke of extra virgin olive oil’s history, production and processes.  

Writer and Italian journalist Luigi Caricato has published many books on the topic of extra virgin olive oil. Also the founder and director of Olio Officina Magazine and Festival, Luigi spoke on the media and public’s perception of extra virgin olive oil.

Professor James Fildes (CEO and Chief Scientist/professor of experimental surgery) and Dr Tim Entwistle (founding scientist) from Pebble Biotechnology Laboratories in Wilmslow. Presented their findings following NHS clinical trials focussed on diet; including evaluating the impact of low-fat and Mediterranean inspired diets.

An inspired lunch using EVOO from Gabrielloni:

  • Lancashire potted shrimps with Laudato EVOO (replacing butter with Italian extra virgin olive oil)
  • Bruschetta al pomodoro with Solivo EVOO
  • Beef carpaccio with Ascolana Dura EVOO
  • Pappa al Pomodoro with Laudato EVOO
  • Tortelloni rossi con caprino with Laudato EVOO
  • Lemon semifreddo with Mignola EVOO
  • Chocolate truffles with Piantone del Mogliano EVOO

A notable guest list included the Mayor of Ribble Valley, Councillor Mark Hindle, County Councillor Alan Cullens BEM, Gabriella Migliore - Italian Trade Agency (ITA) London, Gabriella Manfredi - Agricultural Attaché from the Italian Embassy in London, wine and olive oil importers, award-winning chefs, Booths, Visit Lancashire as well as regional press and media.

Guest Natalie Christopher from Lancashire & North West Magazine said “A wonderful event, with evidence-based information as the platform for a positive and healthy collaboration between the two countries. The food was absolutely second to none, perfectly crafted where the olive oil was part of the beautiful flavours. All of the speakers were top class, with olive oil being the star of the show. We can't wait to see what is next for Agrichef Maurizio as his Extra Virgin Olive Oil for a Healthier Future campaign grows.”




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