$2 million: Olive oil isn't just from Italy anymore

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Starting this month some Americans will learn that almost 85% of the world's olive oil comes from the exotic Andalucia region of southern Spain.

Miami-based Hispanic agency Machado Garcia-Serra Publicidad kicks off a $2 million South Florida test-aimed at the general market as well as Hispanics-this month with TV, radio and print ads, PR and product tastings.

"Americans think the best olive oil is Italian-and the best pasta and shoes," said agency CEO Manny Machado. "They've been great marketers. That's our target."

The ad tagline is "Made from the best olives on earth." Ads start "I have a confession to make ..." as unlikely characters, from chefs to Italians making fettucine, reveal that they really use olive oil from Andalucia.

Mr. Machado said his client Extenda, Andalucia's trade promotion agency, and Spain's olive oil producers have made a three-year commitment to the U.S. promotion, which will roll out next in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. The first efforts to promote Andalucia's olive oil are in the U.S., but a campaign will be developed next for China and Japan, he said.

In the U.S., ad spending will increase by 50% to 75% each year as the effort to persuade Americans to choose Andalucia rather than Italy when they buy olive oil becomes more national.

Mr. Machado said Extenda selected a Hispanic agency for the U.S. launch "because they wanted to be sure we were sensitive to the nuances of the product and to Spanish culture."

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