Acesur, one of the world’s largest olive oil producers and bottlers, continued its presence in the United States by purchasing 356 hectares in California.
Carlos Yagüe Benjumea, the company’s head of communication, told Olive Oil Times that the Spanish company founded more than 150 years ago had planted 450,000 Arbosana, Arbequina, Lecciana and Sikitita trees that are expected to enter production ahead of the 2027 harvest.
The grove is located in Woodland, California, one of the state’s most significant olive-growing regions just west of Sacramento.See Also:Cautious Optimism as Olive Harvest Gets Underway in California
“We hope to obtain about five million kilograms of olives, which in an average yield of 20 percent would put us at one million liters,” Yagüe Benjumea said.
The company plans to mill the olives with a local partner and sell the resulting extra virgin olive oil in the United States.
“Acesur would be in a position to bring to the market an extra virgin olive oil of Californian origin, which the local consumer highly appreciates since the country is only capable of producing five percent of the olive oil it consumes, being the main consumer outside the European Union,” Yagüe Benjumea said.
He described the purchase and planting as the first phase of a project to expand the company’s U.S. presence.
Last year, Acesur opened its first bottling and distribution center in Suffolk, Virginia, roughly ten years after opening its first commercial office in New York City.
“In phase two, [we will] expand our olive grove and acquire our own mill and packaging plant,” Yagüe Benjumea said.
He added that the decision to expand its U.S. presence comes after the company reported strong growth for Acesur North America, which exceeded $100 million (€92 million) in revenue, along with a 15 percent increase in sales in North America.
According to chief executive Gonzalo Guillen, expanding Acesur’s capacity to produce olive oil in some of its most important markets is part of its wider strategic plan.
“Acesur is immersed in a great strategic plan that seeks to grow in its vertical integration… and the growing internationalization of its businesses,” he told Olive Oil Times. “Therefore, we are investing in expanding our production capacity, adding more hectares of modern olive groves owned or managed by ourselves.”