The European Commission released an update of the current wholesale prices of olive oil in the major markets of Spain, Italy and Greece revealing rates generally lower than the same period of last year. Among the three, Italy boasts the highest prices in both extra virgin and virgin olive oil.
Starting off with Spain, extra virgin olive oil is selling for €3.16 ($3.89) per kilo in Jaén, the lowest price among the monitored areas, decreased by 17.9 percent compared to the same period of 2017, when the one-kilo cost was €3.86 ($4.51). Price fluctuations are found in different areas of the country, with the highest per kilo price in Sevilla with €3.40 ($4.19). The average price of extra virgin in Spain is €3.23 ($3.98) per kilo.
Virgin olive oil costs €3.00 ($3.69) per kilo in Jaén, down by 20.1 percent from last year when one kilo was selling for €3.75 ($4.62). Toledo leads the price range with €3.18 ($3.92), while Badajoz is the cheapest with €2.80 ($3.45) per kilo. The average price of virgin olive oil in Spain is €2.98 ($3.67) per kilo.
Lampante olive oil is selling for €2.80 ($3.45) per kilo in Jaén, compared to €3.69 ($4.54) a year ago. The highest price is found in Málaga with €3.00 ($3.69) and the lowest in Tarragona with €2.53 ($3.11) per kilo. The average price in the country for a kilo of lampante is €2.81 ($3.46).
In Italy, extra virgin olive oil costs €4.08 ($5.03) per kilo in Bari, reduced by a significant 33.6 percent compared to €6.14 ($7.56) during the same period of 2017. Extra virgin from Palermo is the most expensive at €4.85 ($5.98), while the cheapest is found in Catanzaro and Cosenza with €3.80 ($4.68) for one kilo. The average selling price of Italian extra virgin is €4.15 ($5.11) per kilo.
Virgin olive oil in Italy presents a uniformity in price with €3.35 ($4.13) per kilo in Brindisi, Lecce, and Taranto. The average selling price of virgin oil in the country is €3.19 ($3.93) per kilo.
Lampante olive oil marks the highest price in Catanzaro with €2.73 ($3.36), while the cheapest lampante oil is found in Gioia Tauro with €2.50 ($3.08). The average price of one kilo of lampante oil in Italy is €2.57 ($3.16).
In Greece, extra virgin olive oil is selling for €3.08 ($3.79) per kilo in Chania, down 13.5 percent from last year when the price topped at €3.56 ($4.38). The highest price is found in Lakonia region with €3.37 ($4.15) and the lowest in Heraklion with €3.03 ($3,73), while the average selling price of extra virgin is €3.16 ($3.89) per kilo.
Virgin olive oil costs €2.95 ($3.63) per kilo in Chania, down by 13.2 percent from the same period last year when it cost €3.40 ($4.19). The lowest price is recorded in Heraklion with €2.92 ($3.60), with the average price ranging at €2.94 ($3.62) per kilo of virgin olive oil.
As of lampante olive oil, one kilo costs €2.65 ($3.26) in Chania, compared to €2.90 ($3.57) last season.
As far as Greece is concerned, the latest feedback from the press describes a market that is stagnant. There is a surplus of olive oil stored by producers, but there is also limited demand from wholesale buyers.
According to some reports, Italy, the biggest buyer of Greek olive oil, has already bought tax-free olive oil from Tunisia to cover its needs. The reduced interest from buyers is reflected in the price of extra virgin olive oil, which peaked at €3.85 ($4.74) per kilo in January but then started to decline to settle at around €3.16 ($3.89) for the time being.
Olive Oil Times asked the Agricultural Association of Chania in Crete to share his view on the market. Their spokesperson, Nektarios Parashakis, said: “There is no serious demand for olive oil now in Greece. There is a rumor that Spain will have a 10 percent bigger yield in the 2018/19 season and big players in Italy and elsewhere are reluctant to buy now waiting for cheaper Spanish oil. Nevertheless, I believe that the demand for Greek extra virgin will increase by this summer especially from Italian bottlers.”