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Olive oil Info
History of olive tree
World Production and Market
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Olive Oil Sensory Analysis
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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
28-02-2015: Spain: El mercado de aceite de oliva con 484.100 tn comercializadas revela su buen comportamiento (sorry only in spanish)
27-02-2015: Spain: Las salidas de aceite de oliva caen un 18% (sorry only in spanish)
27-02-2015: Spain: El Gobierno investiga 153 casos de aceite y leche a precio anormalmente bajo (sorry only in spanish)
27-02-2015: Italy: Olio, falso made in Italy sulle bottiglie (sorry only in italian)
26-02-2015: Grazie all'olio d'oliva di eccellenza si potrà sconfiggere il cancro (sorry only in italian)
26-02-2015: Ce composé d’huile d’olive tue les cellules cancéreuses en moins d’une heure (sorry only in french)
25-02-2015: Spanish Olive Oil Campaign Underway in India
25-02-2015: France: Des aides financières pour les producteurs d'olives (sorry only in french)
25-02-2015: Lebanon: Mille oléiculteurs initiés à la mécanisation à travers le Liban (sorry only in french)
24-02-2015: El Parlamento Europeo defiende una categoría Premium en el aceite de oliva (sorry only in spanish)
24-02-2015: Spain: Envasadores venden 56 millones de litros de aceites en enero, 11,7 % menos (sorry only in spanish)
24-02-2015: Spain: El mercado de futuros del aceite de oliva aprueba un plan de austeridad (sorry only in spanish)
24-02-2015: Spain: Deoleo sufre pérdidas de 74 millones por los gastos de refinanciación (sorry only in spanish)
24-02-2015: Spain: Deoleo denuncia venta de aceite a pérdida en España (sorry only in spanish)
20-02-2015: Italy: L'anno nero dell'olio d'oliva crolla la produzione (sorry only in italian)
20-02-2015: 9th edition of Olio Capitale from Saturday 7th to Tuesday 10th March 2015 in Trieste, Italy
20-02-2015: Algérie:Campagne de mise en terre de 280.000 plants d’oliviers à travers la wilaya de Tizi-ouzou (sorry only in french)
19-02-2015: Fattoria, nuevo sistema continuo de Pieralisi (sorry only in spanish)
19-02-2015: Component in EVOO Kills Cancer Cells
19-02-2015: L'olio d'oliva italiano vince la sfida contro le miscele di oli comunitari (sorry only in italian)
19-02-2015: UC Davis Olive Center Plans Two-Part Sensory Evaluation Course for Spring
16-02-2015: New York Conference to Offer Diverse Perspectives on the Culture of Olive Oil
13-02-2015: Spain: Andalucía reduce el 5,9 % la cifra de producción de aceite respecto al aforo (sorry only in spanish)
13-02-2015: La Tunisie a exporté 72 mille tonnes d'huile d'olive (sorry only in french)
12-02-2015: Olio d'oliva 2015: Grecia e Tunisia sbancano Spagna e Italia (sorry only in italian)
12-02-2015: Napa Valley olive oil competition under way
12-02-2015: Tunisia: Sfax: journée d'information sur la promotion de l'huile d'olive tunisienne dans le marché américain (sorry only in french)
12-02-2015: La Spagna si lancia alla conquista del mercato indiano dell'olio d'oliva (sorry only in italian)
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