` Schools in Jaén Celebrate 'Olive Oil Week' - Olive Oil Times

Schools in Jaén Celebrate 'Olive Oil Week'

Nov. 16, 2015
Erin Ridley

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The world’s top olive oil-pro­duc­ing region edu­cates its youth, turn­ing them into extra vir­gin ambas­sadors

Over the course of last week, 156 schools across the region of Jaén, Spain, and some 40,000 stu­dents, were united to cel­e­brate the Semana Escolar del Aceite de Oliva, the School Week of Olive Oil.

- María Molero Villar, Cortijo Spiritu Santo

The event included a vari­ety of activ­i­ties adapted for chil­dren of all ages, from tod­dlers to teenagers rang­ing from crafts to read­ings, the­ater, and, of course, tast­ings through which the kids can dis­cover extra virgin’s fla­vors and aro­mas. Students will learn about olive oil’s his­tory in the region, and even how it has inspired poets and painters who’ve passed through.

The ulti­mate goal is to teach young locals the value of extra vir­gin, par­tic­u­larly when it comes to its health ben­e­fits, thus devel­op­ing them into con­sumers and ambas­sadors of the region’s liq­uid gold.

It’s a wor­thy objec­tive. Though Jaén is the world’s top olive oil-pro­duc­ing region, its res­i­dents often know rel­a­tively lit­tle about the ben­e­fits of extra vir­gin and how best to appre­ci­ate it.

María Molero Villar, an owner of Jaén-based Cortijo Spiritu Santo olive oil, explained to Olive Oil Times: It’s impor­tant to teach even the youngest of kids the value of high-qual­ity olive oil so that they appre­ci­ate it and its health ben­e­fits. They are our future con­sumers.”

Our aim,” said Francisco Reyes, the pres­i­dent of the local gov­ern­ment, is to con­tinue work­ing with this idea that olive oil and the cul­ture around olives get the atten­tion and respect they deserve.”

The week­long ini­tia­tive was dri­ven by the gov­ern­ment of Andalusia and forms part of the sec­ond annual Fiesta del Primer Aceite de la Cosecha, which offi­cially kicks off the har­vest sea­son.

This Festival of the Harvest’s First Oil” takes place through­out November in Jaén and beyond. Other event high­lights include tast­ings, work­shops, and some 50 bars and 30 restau­rants that are fea­tur­ing the newly pro­duced oils.

  • Ideal and El País

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