Award-Winning Greek Producer Nurtures Soil Health and Patrini Olives

Spiridon Anangnostopoulos of Ranis has used his expertise to create the ideal soil substrate for his olive trees, bringing a local olive variety out of obscurity.

Spiridon Anagnostopoulos in his olive groves in the northwestern Peloponnese
By Costas Vasilopoulos
Sep. 6, 2023 12:44 UTC
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Spiridon Anagnostopoulos in his olive groves in the northwestern Peloponnese

Agronomist Spiridon Anagnostopoulos, an expert in olive tree cul­ti­va­tion and the owner of Ranis from north­west­ern Peloponnese, knows that the key to strong, pro­duc­tive olive trees is to take good care of the soil in which they grow.

A healthy soil means that our olive trees can absorb the nutri­ents they need to grow prop­erly through­out their whole bio­log­i­cal cycle and phe­no­lic-cre­at­ing stages,” Anagnostopoulos told Olive Oil Times.

We grow a unique olive vari­ety using mod­ern sci­en­tific cul­ti­va­tion meth­ods that, at the same time, pro­tect the envi­ron­ment and pro­mote the sus­tain­abil­ity of our prod­uct.- Spiridon Anagnostopoulos, owner, Ranis

After ven­tur­ing into the retail sale of agri­cul­tural sup­plies by open­ing phys­i­cal stores and an online store in the 2000s, Anagnostopoulos decided to enter the world of olive oil pro­duc­tion by invest­ing in the local Patrini vari­ety.

We spot­ted a gap in the mar­ket since Patrini was largely unex­ploited,” he said.

See Also:Producer Profiles

The crew was ready from the out­set: Anagnostopoulos teamed up with his wife, a chemist, and his col­leagues from his retail busi­ness, agron­o­mists and mar­ket­ing experts, to form the team behind Ranis.

Founded in 2017, the com­pany owns 1,500 olive trees of Patrini (also known as Koutsourelia), a cul­ti­var that gives small, con­i­cal-cylin­dri­cal dru­pes usu­ally har­vested from November to December.

In Chalandritsa, a semi-moun­tain­ous area south of Patras in the Peloponnese, the olive trees of Ranis grow in their nat­ural habi­tat.

Chalandritsa is con­sid­ered the home of Patrini,” Anagnostopoulos said. The com­bi­na­tion of the area’s ter­roir, alti­tude and micro­cli­mate is ideal for the demand­ing but promis­ing Patrini trees to thrive.”

Anagnostopoulos added that most prob­lems aris­ing in cul­ti­vat­ing the company’s olive trees are related to abi­otic fac­tors.

profiles-the-best-olive-oils-production-europe-awardwinning-greek-producer-nurtures-soil-health-and-patrini-olives-olive-oil-times

Ranis focuses its olive farming and oil production on the local Patrini olive variety.

Along the Mediterranean, extreme weather con­di­tions such as ther­mal stress, drought and flood­ing, can affect yields by neg­a­tively impact­ing the quan­tity and qual­ity of the olive oil and the olive cul­ti­va­tion in gen­eral,” he said.

Based on our know-how and cumu­la­tive expe­ri­ence, main­tain­ing a healthy soil is our top pri­or­ity for our trees to develop prop­erly,” Anagnostopoulos added. So, we increase the soil’s poten­tial for the trees to absorb more nutri­tious ingre­di­ents, con­se­quently increas­ing their tol­er­ance against the unfor­giv­ing abi­otic fac­tors.”

According to a spe­cific cul­ti­va­tion pro­to­col Ranis has devel­oped over the years, Anagnostopoulos said microor­gan­isms and pro­bi­otics enrich the soil in the company’s olive groves to cre­ate the ideal tree sub­strate.

Our medium-inten­sity, fruity olive oil already boasts a unique organolep­tic pro­file,” he said. Combined with soil-based pro­bi­otics such as bac­te­ria, microor­gan­isms fur­ther enhance the organolep­tic char­ac­ter­is­tics and qual­ity of our oil, includ­ing the color, fra­grance and fla­vor.”

He also noted that the soil sup­ple­ments used by Ranis come from Spain and the United States, two coun­tries that pio­neer sci­en­tific research in envi­ron­men­tally friendly soil improve­ment meth­ods.

See Also:How Intensive Agriculture and Olive Cultivation Impact Soil Health

We grow a unique olive vari­ety using mod­ern sci­en­tific cul­ti­va­tion meth­ods that, at the same time, pro­tect the envi­ron­ment and pro­mote the sus­tain­abil­ity of our prod­uct,” Anagnostopoulos said.

Packaged in a dis­tinc­tive crim­son bot­tle, Castello del Barone Collector’s Edition is the mas­ter­piece in the Ranis’ lineup of olive oils.

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Characterized by the com­pany as an aris­to­cratic extra vir­gin from the Venetian era,” Castello del Barone is a mono­va­ri­etal, high-phe­no­lic organic olive oil from early har­vested Patrini olives.

The records show that the Patrini vari­ety has been cul­ti­vated in Chalandritsa since the 13th cen­tury when the Venetians ruled the area,” Anagnostopoulos said.

We har­vest early, from mid-September to late October,” he added. Barone is a unique extra vir­gin olive oil boast­ing a vivid green color, a fruity aroma and a bal­anced taste of bit­ter and pun­gent.”

Barone and Ranis, another extra vir­gin from Patrini olives pro­duced by the com­pany, are also high in polyphe­nols, bear­ing a health claim that meets the E.U. reg­u­la­tion 432/2012 require­ments.

Analysis by the University of Athens has shown that the lev­els of phe­no­lic com­pounds in our olive oils, such as oleo­can­thal and olea­cein, are above aver­age,” Anagnostopoulos said.

profiles-the-best-olive-oils-production-europe-awardwinning-greek-producer-nurtures-soil-health-and-patrini-olives-olive-oil-times

Castello del Barone earned a Gold Award at its debut entry to the NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition.

The per­se­ver­ance and efforts of Anagnostopoulos and the entire Ranis team to per­fect their olive oil have paved the way for the industry’s most cov­eted qual­ity awards; Castello del Barone won a Gold Award at the 2023 NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition last April, in its first appear­ance in the com­pe­ti­tion.

Winning in such a pres­ti­gious com­pe­ti­tion is the high­est reward for all our hard work,” Anagnostopoulos said. One of our goals when found­ing Ranis was to par­tic­i­pate in the NYIOOC.”

Anagnostopoulos added that the NYIOOC awards are also the key to new mar­kets for olive oil pro­duc­ers look­ing to expand their busi­ness.

There would be no other way for our vari­ety and region to enter the olive oil world map if it weren’t for the NYIOOC,” he said. After win­ning, our orders in the part­ner mar­kets of the United Arab Emirates dou­bled, and our Barone brand also caught the atten­tion of new mar­kets such as the United States and Canada.”

Regardless of Ranis’ achieve­ments, Anagnostopoulos rec­og­nizes that suc­cess comes with respon­si­bil­ity as he expresses his deter­mi­na­tion for con­tin­u­ous progress.

We have already raised the bar, and we will con­tinue to strive to improve fur­ther,“ he said. Our high-phe­no­lic, organic extra vir­gin olive oil from Patini olives is a unique prod­uct char­ac­ter­is­tic of our region that we ought to pro­tect and nur­ture.”


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