Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) is one of the most representative products of Spanish gastronomy and Mediterranean cuisine. Moreover, if there is something that represents the Spanish people in a distinctive way, it is the use of this so-called “liquid gold” in the vast majority of their dishes.
Although most of us know many of the benefits of virgin olive oil, and its multiple healthy properties for our body, there are many facts that we do not know or overlook. Although we use it almost every day, we have found 5 curiosities about EVOO that will surely surprise you.
1. How many olives does it take to make one liter of olive oil?
We know for sure that EVOO comes from the small and showy olives that we are used to seeing in olive trees, but you probably can’t imagine how many olives need to be processed to get that bottle of oil you have in your pantry. Well, based on the average, it takes approximately 5 to 6 kilos of olives to get 1 liter of EVOO.
This number can vary depending on factors such as the olive variety, the time of harvesting or the weather.
2. Which Spanish province produces the most olive oil?
Spain is currently the world’s leading producer of EVOO, producing around 35% of all the olive oil in the world, and 44% at European level. However, it is the province of Jaén that produces the largest amount of olive oil at the national scale.
At Lidaria we know this fact first hand, since our extra virgin olive oil comes from the “Los Cortijillos” farm located in the province of Jaén. The farm has the perfect and unique geoclimatic characteristics to obtain the highest quality from the cultivation of Picual olive trees, which accounts for more than 90% of the cultivated area.
In addition, it is necessary to mention that the olive oil from Jaén has a great prestige, both nationally and internationally, making it one of the most prized in the global market.
3. Which country consumes the most olive oil?
Although it is very tempting to answer “Spain”, the truth is that there is a Mediterranean country that is ahead of us. Greece is crowned as the country that consumes the most EVOO with 16.3 liters per person per year. In second and third place, we find Spain and Italy, with an average of 10 liters per person.
4. Why is the oil bottled in opaque glass?
Maybe you have never noticed, but most EVOOS are packaged in dark green bottles or other opaque colors. And although it may seem that this is done purely for aesthetic reasons, the reality is that there is a scientific explanation behind this practice. Olive oil is bottled in opaque glass to delay the oxidation process caused by light. It is therefore recommended to pay attention to this detail before buying a good EVOO and avoid clear containers.
At Lidaria we want to offer you a premium quality EVOO, that is why we always take care of every last detail, and we bottle our olive oil in opaque glass to protect and maintain its properties intact for as long as possible.
5. How many years can an olive tree live?
The last curiosity we bring you about EVOO is one that we are sure will surprise you. Its life expectancy is 2,000 years. This will depend on where it is planted, its care and the weather conditions of the environment. However, if you are planning to plant an olive tree to obtain EVOO during your whole life, you should know that you will have to wait between 3 and 5 years for it to produce it.
We hope you have been surprised by these curious facts that you probably did not know about olive oil, and that you have learned something new about this food that we use so much in our daily lives.