`Saragossa to Host Seminar on Mediterranean Olive Sector - Olive Oil Times

Saragossa to Host Seminar on Mediterranean Olive Sector

May. 20, 2012
Pandora Penamil Penafiel

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The Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Saragossa (IAMZ-CIHEAM) and the International Olive Council (IOC) will orga­nize between November 26th and 28th a sem­i­nar on the Present and Future of the Mediterranean Olive Sector.

The con­fer­ence, whose last date for entries is November 15th, will last two days with pre­sen­ta­tions and sci­en­tific and tech­ni­cal dis­cus­sions struc­tured in three ses­sions. There will be round­ta­bles with case stud­ies and tech­ni­cal vis­its to Aragon to learn about the tra­di­tional and the mod­ern PDOs and the inten­sive mill sys­tem.

The orga­niz­ers have reported that the sem­i­nar will explore the future of olive farm­ing in the Mediterranean, try­ing to answer ques­tions like:

  • Are inten­sive pro­duc­tion sys­tems sus­tain­able?
  • Will the future olive oil sec­tor be based on these sys­tems, or will it main­tain tra­di­tional sys­tems?
  • What are the fac­tors which have to be improved in pro­cess­ing tech­nolo­gies, espe­cially in coun­tries where a large part of their pro­duc­tion can­not access mar­kets which require strict atten­tion to qual­ity?


Besides the already wide­spread nutri­tional and func­tional prop­er­ties of olive prod­ucts, the sem­i­nar will also focus on the raw mate­r­ial for the nutraceu­ti­cal” (nutri­tion and phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal) indus­try and the keys to open­ing new mar­kets and increase its pres­ence in the already con­sol­i­dated ones.

Olive cul­ti­va­tion is a key ele­ment of Mediterranean agri­cul­ture. According to the IOC fig­ures, nearly 3.3 mil­lion tons of olive oil were pro­duced world­wide in the cam­paign 2011/12, of which 97 per­cent cor­re­sponds to the Mediterranean region.

The pro­duc­tion of olive oil and table olives has been increas­ing in a spec­tac­u­lar way in recent decades, more than dou­bling for olive oil and a 270 per­cent increase for table olives.

This increase is due in part to the estab­lish­ment of plan­ta­tions using inten­sive pro­duc­tion sys­tems which have achieved high yields and a strong degree of mech­a­niza­tion.

European Union sub­si­dies have also played a deci­sive role in this pro­duc­tion increase, as the largest climbs have occurred in the Mediterranean coun­tries of the EU.

The con­sump­tion of olive prod­ucts has fol­lowed the same trend. The Mediterranean region has the largest num­ber of con­sumers, while other major coun­tries such as U.S., Brazil, Australia, and Canada are becom­ing major con­sumers and importers.

Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Saragossa

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