`Olivum Teams up With Local Charity to Feed Families in Need

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Olivum Teams up With Local Charity to Feed Families in Need

May. 1, 2020
Daniel Dawson

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In an effort to mit­i­gate the health and eco­nomic impacts of the COVID-19 pan­demic in south­ern Por­tu­gal, the Alen­tejo Olive Oil Asso­ci­a­tion (Olivum) is team­ing up with Cári­tas de Beja, a local NGO, to help feed fam­i­lies in need.

As unem­ploy­ment rises across the south­ern Por­tuguese region, Cári­tas de Beja has started prepar­ing and cook­ing thou­sands of meals to dis­trib­ute across the province. Olivum will donate olive oil to the NGO to aid in the prepa­ra­tion of healthy meals.

See more: COVID-19 Updates

At a dif­fi­cult time for some needy fam­i­lies in the region, Olivum asso­ciates wanted to con­tribute in sol­i­dar­ity free of charge with the fruit of their work, dis­trib­ut­ing free olive oil that will allow [Cári­tas de Beja] to cook about 14,000 meals,” Gonçalo Almeida Simões, the exec­u­tive direc­tor of Olivum, said.

At the time of writ­ing, Alen­tejo has expe­ri­enced 218 cases of COVID-19 and one fatal­ity. Over­all, Por­tu­gal has recorded more than 25,300 cases and slightly more than 1,000 deaths.

While Por­tu­gal has not faced the same level of pub­lic health cri­sis as other coun­tries in the region, its econ­omy has not been spared.


Nearly one in five Por­tuguese work­ers has been laid off as a result of the pan­demic. Unem­ploy­ment sky­rock­eted to 380,832, just 100,000 shy of the lev­els reached dur­ing the finan­cial cri­sis.

In addi­tion to help­ing sup­ply meals to fam­i­lies in need, mem­bers of Olivum have been repur­pos­ing their farm equip­ment to help san­i­tize pub­lic spaces too.

Olive grow­ers and oil pro­duc­ers have also been deemed essen­tial work­ers by the gov­ern­ment and have worked through­out the quar­an­tine to keep the food sup­ply chain run­ning.

From the first moment that Olivum and its asso­ciates real­ized the neg­a­tive social effects that this pan­demic could cause to the most needy pop­u­la­tions in Alen­tejo, we entered into a part­ner­ship with Cári­tas,” Pedro Lopes, the pres­i­dent of Olivum, said.

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