When you shop for produce at the grocery store or farmers market, what are you looking for
when selecting fruit and vegetables? If you’re like us, you look for brightly colored, ripe, and
firm fruits and vegetables. You probably balk at the sight of vegetables and fruit “turning”, or
even worse, rotting. Now what if I told you this is exactly what we do at the olive groves we get our olive oil from?
Now you’re probably thinking –“Of course, why would you make olive oils out of rotting or old
fruit?” Well, what we’re about to tell you might surprise you…
Now, olive trees aren’t like other fruit trees. Sure, most fruit trees you can walk right up to, pluck a nice luscious looking fruit and chow down. Olive trees are notoriously difficult to harvest from. Their trunks are warped, the leaves are sharp, the branches are pointy, and the fruit is hard to reach. Take a look at this hundred year old olive tree which still produces fruit:
So rather than go through the hassle of picking ripe olives, many groves wait for the fruit to over ripen so they easily fall from the branches – Voila! Theres your harvest - and the olive oil that might be sitting in your kitchen pantry. While this is efficient and cost-effective for the farmer, here’s what those olives look like:
What you see are bruised olives well past their prime. Would you really want to eat something made from those? If you answered yes, good news! This is how most big box stores are getting their olive oil. Now take a look at these hand-picked olives:
Ah, much better! Lush, green, beautiful olives! That is the fruit quality we demand from our
suppliers. And that, right there, is the first step to getting good, fresh olive oil.
Want to learn more? Visit us!
Stay tuned for part 2 of the series: From grove to mill