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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
19-12-2014: Italy's olive oil disaster
18-12-2014: Italy: Coldiretti: scorte di olio di oliva solo per sei mesi (sorry only in italian)
18-12-2014: Spain: Dcoop prepara con Mercaoleo un gran plan de expansión (sorry only in spanish)
18-12-2014: El sector oleícola mueve en el mundo entre 6.500 y 11.000 millones de euros (sorry only in spanish)
18-12-2014: Italy: Olio d’oliva: Assitol e Federolio serve nuovo piano olivicolo (sorry only in italian)
17-12-2014: Italy: Nel 2015 dovremo razionare l'olio d'oliva (sorry only in italian)
17-12-2014: Olive oil dating back 8,000 years found in North
17-12-2014: Presentan un estudio internacional sobre los costes de producción del aceite de oliva virgen (sorry only in spanish)
17-12-2014: Prezzi in salita per l'olio extra vergine d'oliva e timori per l'impatto sui consumatori (sorry only in italian)
17-12-2014: Burguer King apuesta por el aceite de oliva virgen andaluz (sorry only in spanish)
16-12-2014: A Plan to ‘Relaunch’ Umbrian EVOO
16-12-2014: El COI convoca dos nuevas ediciones de los Premios Mario Solinas (sorry only in spanish)
16-12-2014: Le Synagri préoccupé par l'absence d'une stratégie d'exportation de l'huile d'olive
16-12-2014: After the Olive Fruit Fly and Bacterial Blight, the Dreaded Starling
15-12-2014: Olive Oil market is poised for strong growth in India in coming years
15-12-2014: Olive oil waste to energy to provide electricity and heat to rural Spain
15-12-2014: Tunisia: Les prix de vente de l'huile d'olive dans les huileries oscillent entre 6 et 6,5 Dt le litre (sorry only in french)
12-12-2014: IOC market newsletter November 2014
11-12-2014: Spain: Asaja defiende el abastecimiento de aceite de oliva "sin excesivas tensiones de precios" (sorry only in spanish)
11-12-2014: Phenols in Extra Virgin Olive Oil Inhibit Colon Cancer Cell Growth
11-12-2014: Turkey Fears Backlash in Local and Foreign Markets with Higher Prices
11-12-2014: L'olio extra vergine d'oliva turco a 3,5 euro al litro minaccia l'export (sorry only in italian)
10-12-2014: Project Uses Waste from Olive Oil Production to Power the Mill Itself
10-12-2014: Olive Farmers in Tunisia Lament Price Drop Despite Climb in Oil Prices
10-12-2014: Caerá la producción mundial de aceite de oliva un 27% en la campaña 14/15 y el consumo un 7% (sorry only in spanish)
10-12-2014: Tunisia: L’UTAP appelle l’ONH à réguler les prix de vente des olives (sorry only in french)
09-12-2014: Tunisia: Abdellatif Ghedira nouveau PDG de l'ONH (sorry only in french)
09-12-2014: Olive Oil Prices Soar, Consumption Slides in Latest Report
09-12-2014: Olive oil price hike hits Turkey, may ‘trigger boycott’
09-12-2014: El COI presenta su programa de actividades para 2015 (sorry only in spanish)
08-12-2014: Tunisia: Sfax: le syndicat des agriculteurs lance un cri d'alarme (sorry only in french)
03-12-2014: 3,200 Gallons of Untraceable Olive Oil Confiscated in Tuscany
03-12-2014: World olive oil output to reach 15-year low, olive council says
03-12-2014: La producción mundial de aceite de oliva llegará a 2,3 MM de tn y el consumo a 2,8 MM de ton (sorry only in spanish)
02-12-2014: Olive Oil of Oman
02-12-2014: Toxic waste from olive oil production turned into electricity
01-12-2014: Pakistan: CDA starts plantation drive of olive trees in capital
01-12-2014: El virgen extra italiano roza los 6 euros/kilo en origen y en España rompe barrera de los 3 (sorry only in spanish)
28-11-2014: Morocco: Filière de l'huile d’olive: L’approche production-marketing s’impose (sorry only in french)
28-11-2014: Spain: informacion de mercado del aceite de olive, el comienzo de la campaña 2014/15 (sorry only in spanish)
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