2023 Judges 

Helen Taylor

Helen Taylor

HEAD JUDGE AUSTRALIA - Wagga Wagga NSW

Helen has over fifteen years’ experience in olive oil judging at regional, state and national olive oil competitions in an associate, standard and head judge capacity. Helen was a judge at the finals of the Armonia International Olive Oil Show in Spain.

She is a trained food technologist and in 2003 began training in olive oil sensory evaluation. Helen was one of the founding members of the Australian Olive Oil Sensory Panel at Wagga who then went on to undertake olive oil sommelier and olive oil sensory analysis training in Milan, Italy in 2015.

She has trained in table olive production and assessment and has judged in several table olive shows. Helen continues to be an active member of the Australian Olive Oil Sensory Panel.

 Dr Michelle Wirthensohn

Dr Michelle Wirthensohn

HEAD JUDGE AUSTRALIA - CHARLESTON, SA

Dr Michelle Wirthensohn is the Horticulture Innovation Australia Senior Research Fellow with the University of Adelaide. Michelle has been involved in horticultural breeding and research since graduating from the University of Adelaide where she gained her Bachelor of Agricultural Science (Hons), Graduate Certificate in Higher Education and a PhD in Horticulture.

As a member of the Australian Olive Association’s (AOA) National Table Olive Committee, Michelle helped develop the Voluntary Industry Standard for Table Olives and the Australian Olive Association’s Code of Practice for table oil, table olives and other products.

She has been Head Judge for the Australian Olive Association’s National Table Olive competition since 2011 and for Olives South Australia (OSA) Royal Adelaide Olive Awards. Michelle has been Head Judge for the Australian International Olive Awards in 2017 -2019 and judge at the Fleurieu Fine Foods competition.

ALEANDRO OTTANELLI

ALEANDRO OTTANELLI 

ITALY – FLORENCE

Aleandro currently works with the University of Florence in the Faculty of Agriculture (Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Agrarie, Alimentari, Ambientali e Forestali, DAGRI).

Aleandro has been an olive oil judger for more than 20 years.

He has achieved many formal olive industry qualifications including Panel Leader Certification and a Member Panel Test Certificate AIF0; ANAPOO. He has also contributed to the competition and guide: Slow Food, II Magnifico and M0OIC Montecarlo.

Aleandro is involved in research focusing on olive orchard management, cultivar characterization, breeding, mechanical harvest and the milling process. He has co-written more than 20 technical and scientific papers on these topics. He also has one Patent on the mechanical pruning process.

Aleandro is involved in several international projects including introducing olive oil cultivation in a number of East Asia regions.

Aleandro is based in Florence and is a Director on the Board of Laudemio. He consults all things olive for Tenuta Maryamadoo and Palazzo Di Varignana Agricultural Estate.

 

 

2023 Associate Judges 

The Australian International Olive Awards competition prides itself on offering a number of ‘Associate Judge’ positions to future judges. These are training positions where associate judges hone their skills, get more experience and learn from the best judges available.