What Makes for a Good Olive Crop for Olive Oil?

July 24, 2020

To get the best golden-green, rich olive oil, you must first start with great olives. Using the highest-quality olives from the best varieties available will ensure your olive oil production in Ohio yields a product that looks, tastes and smells delicious.

Every step of the olive oil making process affects the final outcome, from growing the olives, harvesting and transporting them to how they’re processed. Taking the utmost care makes it more likely that your final product will be of high quality, with a longer shelf life. Your olive crop also will determine the cost and yield, so it’s important to do the research to get the best product possible.

The best olives for making olive oil

Different varieties of olives will, of course, produce different flavors and aromas. Olive oil can range from mild and fruity to intensely pungent, with bitter notes. Depending on the olives you use, you can expect that the antioxidant levels, yield and shelf life will vary as well.

Some of the most popular olives for making olive oil are Arbosana, Koroneiki and Arbequina. These three olives are great for making oil, but you would probably never eat them on their own. Arbosana and Koroneiki both have pungent grassy flavors and aromas, while Arbequina is a mild, buttery olive that smooths out sharper or more acidic flavors.

Most olive oils are blends of several different kinds of olives, although olive oils that use just one type aren’t uncommon. Having a variety available allows makers to blend the different tastes and aromas to achieve the exact flavor profile they’re looking for.

Generally, the differences between olives that are good for eating and those that are good for olive oil depend on how big the pit is in relation to the fruit itself. The more flesh there is, the better they are for snacking. Olives with large pits are more suited toward being milled for oil.

Growing an olive crop

Olive trees are a particularly hardy crop, and can be grown on slopes and rocky terrain that would be unsuitable for other crops. They grow best in places with long, dry summers and mild winters (nothing below 22 degrees Fahrenheit). Subtropical climates work best for these trees, which is why they grow well in the American West and South.

Production methods that can affect your oil

The way the olives are harvested and milled also affects the quality and flavor of your oil. It’s always better to harvest the fruit and immediately bring it to the milling facility; storing them carefully ensures that the olives aren’t damaged or bruised during the journey.

Some lesser companies extend their yield by using chemicals, heating the oil and adding water, which negatively affect the oil quality.

Finally, olive oil needs to be stored properly, too—it must be kept away from heat and light, or the oil will be damaged.

Olivamed LLC is your source for quality olive oil manufacturing in Ohio. Reach out today to start your own private label or supply your store and kitchen.

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