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World Olive Oil Production and Market

The olive oil tree flourishes in Mediterranean-type climates (between 30-45th latitudes) with hot dry summers and cool winters. The trees are sensitive to the cold during the growing season, but are able to tolerate drought and heat. Olive oil production is still mostly centered in the Mediterranean region, although in recent years we are beginning to see olive oils from regions throughout the world.

Spain with over 320 million olive trees is the number one producer of olive oil at 37% of world production, with 75% of that coming from Andalusia.  The types of olives grown in Spain are the arbequina and verdial varieties of Catalonia, and the hojiblanca, piqual, cornicabra, and lechin varieties of the south. The piqual variety of the south accounts for 40% of all olive trees in Spain.

The second largest producer with 24% of worldwide production is Italy. The types of olives grown in Italia are the coratina in Puglia (Bari) , Ogliarola Barese in Puglia and Basilicata , Carolea in Calabria , Leccino in Toscana and Umbria , Frantoio and Moraiolo in the centre of Italia , Taggiasca in Liguria.
Italians who consume 10 quarts of olive oil per person per year do not produce enough oil for their domestic consumption, yet they are one of the largest exporters of olive oil in the world. Much of their oil is imported, bottled and exported as an Italian product. Spain Greece and Tunisia are their major suppliers.

Greece is the third largest producer with 22% of the world production. And Tunisia the fourth producer with 9% of the world production , the types of olives grown in Tunisia are essantialy represented ( 95%) by two types : Chemlali and Chitoui .

Other countries that produce significant amounts of olive oil are Turkey (7%)  , Syria (7%) and Morocco (2%) .

These seven countries alone account for 90% of world production


Olive oil represents 3% of all fats and oils consumed in the world.

The main olive oil producers are also the main consuming countries. European Union accounts for 82% of world consumption. Mediterranean basin countries represent 90% of world consumption. Other consuming countries are United States, Canada, Australia and Japan.

Production Cost and Market Price

Olive oil is a relatively expensive oil compared to other kinds of oil since it needs a special production treatment: olive crop is a long process (olives are produced only after the maturity of the tree; that means after five years). Harvest is still made by hand in most of the regions. Finally, processing needs an advanced technology, particularly in large producing areas(see technology).

Prices paid to producers are quite unstable, mainly due to the change in the quantities produced from one year to another and the level of stocks. However, it is difficult to assess the price formation mechanism. Refined olive oils are generally less expensive than virgin oils.  A possible explanation would be an insufficent amount of lampante oil to meet demand of refining industry given the good quality of produced virgin oil and as a result an increase in lampante oil prices.

 The producer prices paid on three representative markets of the Europeen Country – Bari (Italy), Heraklion/Messinia (Greece) and Jaén (Spain). And also market of Sfax (Tunisia); their movements influence the prices paid in other regions of the European Community and have an impact on pricing in other producing countries, especially of exports.


Olive oil News
30-01-2015: UE facilita el acceso a su territorio de exportaciones aceite oliva de Túnez (sorry only in spanish)
30-01-2015: Spain: La producción de aceite de oliva supera las 598.000 toneladas (sorry only in spanish)
30-01-2015: Grecia flexibiliza sus precios del aceite de oliva (sorry only in spanish)
30-01-2015: L'UE décide des mesures exceptionnelles pour faciliter les exportations tunisiennes d'huile d'olive (sorry only in french)
30-01-2015: Spain: El sector agrario anticipa "tensiones" en el mercado ante la escasez de aceite de oliva (sorry only in spanish)
30-01-2015: Spain: Una campaña “de cine” para promocionar los Aceites de Oliva en India (sorry only in spanish)
29-01-2015: Spain: Ya es posible la detección precoz de la verticilosis en el olivar (sorry only in spanish)
29-01-2015: Spain: Las ventas de aceite español alcanzan las 122.00 toneladas en diciembre (sorry only in spanish)
29-01-2015: Spain: COAG alerta de un fraude en el etiquetado del aceite de oliva (sorry only in spanish)
29-01-2015: I prezzi alti dell'olio d'oliva spaventano e gli scambi all'ingrosso si fermano (sorry only in italian)
28-01-2015: Pieralisi impulsa la utilización del paté de aceituna como aditivo alimentario (sorry only in spanish)
27-01-2015: Spain: Los grandes envasadores se lanzan a por aceite de oliva Destacado (sorry only in spanish)
27-01-2015: Tunisia Becomes the World’s Second Largest Olive Oil Producer, For Now
27-01-2015: Spain: Las ventas de aceite de oliva virgen envasado ascendieron un 31% en 2014 (sorry only in spanish)
23-01-2015: Spain: Los grandes envasadores se retiran del mercado del aceite de oliva (sorry only in spanish)
23-01-2015: Italy: Il futuro dell'olio italiano. Le quattro strategie del Ministero per risollevare il comparto olivicolo-oleario (sorry only in italian)
22-01-2015: Australia's largest olive-oil producer invests in Woodland
22-01-2015: Spain: Andalucía inicia la vigilancia de la Xylella Fastidiosa en el olivar (sorry only in spanish)
21-01-2015: Marruecos se adhiere a las normas COI para valorizar sus aceites de oliva (sorry only in spanish)
21-01-2015: Lower production of European olive oil an opportunity for California brands
20-01-2015: Spain: UPA-Andalucía pedirá al Gobierno apoyo a la concentración de la oferta olivarera (sorry only in spanish)
20-01-2015: Spain: El Magrama avanza una cosecha de 813.586 toneladas de aceite de oliva en 2014/15 (-54,1% respecto a 2013/14) (sorry only in spanish)
19-01-2015: Spain: La Agencia del Aceite confirma la gran caída de cosecha en Córdoba (sorry only in spanish)
16-01-2015: OLIVE JAPAN 2015 Marche Exhibitors’ Registration Started !
15-01-2015: Spain: La producción de aceite de oliva alcanzó las 589.000 toneladas en diciembre (sorry only in spanish)
15-01-2015: Olive oil demand falls in Europe homelands
15-01-2015: Morocco: Huile d’Olive: Un futur agrégateur pour organiser la filière (sorry only in french)
15-01-2015: Greek consumption of olive oil has slumped almost 40 per cent
15-01-2015: Tunisia: Lancement du 3ème concours pour le ''Prix de la meilleure huile d'olive conditionnée'' (sorry only in french)
15-01-2015: Spain: Una delegación marroquí de la prefectura de Mèknes conoce la producción del aceite de oliva en la provincia (sorry only in spanish)
13-01-2015: In Land of Milk and Honey, Distaste for Bitter and Pungent EVOO
13-01-2015: Spain: El Ministerio avanza una cosecha de aceite de oliva de 824.235 toneladas (sorry only in spanish)
13-01-2015: La guerra dell'Olio: gli Usa contro la Toscana. Tutti i retroscena (sorry only in italian)
12-01-2015: Turkey’s Olive Oil Exports Fall by Half
12-01-2015: Spain: El sector aceitero acusa a la distribución de vender a pérdidas (sorry only in spanish)
12-01-2015: Italians buy Greek olives to cover needs
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