Organic Olive Cultivation Continues to Grow in Spain

The land area dedicated to organic olive farming in Spain rose to 209,288 hectares in 2019.
Jul. 20, 2020
Daniel Dawson

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Lands devoted to organ­i­cally cul­ti­vated olive groves in Spain increased by nearly five per­cent in 2019, accord­ing to the lat­est analy­sis from the country’s Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

Overall, organic agri­cul­tural sur­face area in the coun­try increased by 4.8 per­cent, allow­ing Spain to main­tain its posi­tion as the largest organic farm­ing nation in Europe and the fourth largest in the world.

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It is a mag­nif­i­cent fact that reflects the eco­log­i­cal com­mit­ment of our farm­ers and ranch­ers,” said Luis Planas, Spain’s Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. We are on the right track to meet the objec­tives set by the European Union.”

According to the ministry’s report, there are now 209,288 hectares (517,162 acres) of cer­ti­fied-organic olive groves in Spain, an increase of 4.6 per­cent com­pared with 2018. In 2018, the amount of organic olive groves had increased by three per­cent.

Nearly three-quar­ters of these groves are located in Andalusia and Castilla-La Mancha. Overall, organic groves have been planted, con­verted or cer­ti­fied in 16 of Spain’s 17 autonomous com­mu­ni­ties.

The major­ity of these groves are used in olive oil pro­duc­tion and esti­mated to yield about 305,000 tons of organic olive oil per annum. A much smaller por­tion of the groves are used for table olive pro­duc­tion.

The main advan­tages of plant­ing new organic groves and con­vert­ing old ones are two fold: organic olive groves are more resis­tant to the spread of dis­ease, such as Xylella fas­tidiosa, and are an effec­tive way to add value to tra­di­tion­ally-pro­duced oils and olives.


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