The world produced 3.164 million tons of olive oil during the 2013-14 crop year, according to the latest International Olive Council (IOC) newsletter — an increase of 32 percent over the year before. Spain, which accounted for 57 percent of the global output had a record year, nearly doubling its production and making up for lower totals from other producers, notably Greece which saw its yield drop by more than half to 135,000 tons.
But this year, as the harvest season in the Northern hemisphere gets underway, the IOC estimates world production to recoil to 2.56 million tons — with Spain contributing just half of last year’s record amount, while Greece will bounce back from a disastrous year, to more than double its production to 300,000 tons.
See more: Complete Coverage of the 2014 Harvest
While the world produced 170,000 tons more than it consumed during the last season, this year will be different, the IOC says, as it predicts demand to exceed supply, which could explain rising producer prices for olive oil. Italian olive oil is fetching 37 percent more than it did last year, surpassing the 4-euro mark to €4.10/kg at the end of last month.
In fact, according to the latest International Monetary Fund figures for August, the average ex-tanker price ($4.14/kg) for extra virgin olive oil reached its highest level since July, 2008.
After a slow start, imports in the U.S., Canada, Australia and Japan rallied to show gains for the crop year through June, the IOC reported.
See more: IOC September, 2014 Newsletter