A fire that broke out Saturday afternoon at the main installation of the 175-year-old Ybarra Group in Seville, Spain has finally been extinguished. It took around fifty firefighters and almost two days to completely put out the blaze.
The 90,000-square-meter site is where most of the olive oil and sauces are manufactured and bottled. Initial calculations estimate that the fire consumed nearly half of Ybarra´s primary factory. Storage areas and olive oil tanks were the hardest hit.
Officials are speculating that the fire began in an outdoor area where pallets and other flammable materials were stored. A plastic bottle most likely created a magnifying glass effect where conditions were exacerbated by extreme summer heat and winds.
No one was injured during the fire, however there was a great loss of highly advanced equipment that will need to be replaced.
The company has made a statement that they are dedicated to rebuilding on the same site immediately and will work to restore their full capacity as soon as possible. In the interim, they will make use of other installations.
250 employees were given the next few weeks off and were reassured that they would have a place in the company on their return.
The Seville-based company who merged in 2009 with another family company, Migasa, was at a financial high, earning €212 million ($2.34 million) in 2015 and exporting to 72 countries. These gains had been reinvested in projects with other large companies such as Unilever and Gallina Blanca.
This year marks the 175th anniversary of Ybarra. Their long history in Spanish homes is demonstrated in their mayonnaise´s motto, Juntos, de toda la vida (Together a lifetime).