General Satisfaction with the production of table olives in Greece

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As the 2014-2015 olive year in Greece moves along, one may observe a rather extraordinary picture when it comes to table olives. Everyone: olive oil producers, operators, sellers and exporters, seem to be happy with the production, from quantity to quality and even the price scale.

Of course, to every rule, there is an exception- but fortunately, those exceptions in areas like Thasos and Samothraki, which have been “plagued” by serious olive fly (Dacus oleae) attacks, are only a few.

This means that almost everyone deserves a big and optimistic smile, especially after last year’s disasters (the same applies to olive oil). The question, which nonetheless remains unanswered, is whether this year’s positive turn can serve as compensation for last year’s losses.

Here, we attempt to draw a clearer picture ad rem focusing on specific types of olives and regions

Green Chalkidiki olives (featured)

Green Chalkidiki olives are a typically Greek type of olive, which always takes the lead, as it is commonly harvested while still young. This year, the total production of this type far exceeded expectations and reached approximately 100,000-120,000 tons, 70-75,000 tons of which were produced mainly in Halkidiki, Kavala and other areas.

The olive harvest has been fortunately completed, before the fly attacks and their disastrous effects in areas such as Thasos. The rainfall resulted in a rise in the proportion of large olives, which reached 75-80%, at the expense of the small ones.

The producer prices about the fresh product are as follows: the large olives (100-110 pieces/ kilo) touched the threshold of 1,10 euros/kilo, while the small ones reached the barrier of 0,50 euros/kilo

Given that the olive harvest is now over, those small olives, which for a number of reasons do not follow the classical procedure of alteration to table olives, undergo oil extraction process. The olive oil price in the market – 3 euro per kilo- seems to be quite reasonable, particularly if we take into account its early stage of harvesting as well as its content and moisture analysis, which reaches 15% (1:6,5) or even lower rates.

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