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Olives, Olives, and more Olives

Olive trees. You can be driving down any road in Spain and you’re bound to see some sort of Olive production. Whether it be a few trees in someone’s back yard, or a thousand acre operation or an actual processing plant itself, you’re bound to see it anywhere you go. Olive and olive oil production is something the Spanish take very seriously. They are very prideful in their olives and rightfully so. The amount of production that they output is truly amazing to look at and evaluate. One of the cooler things that we were able to do while in Granada was going to an olive tree farm that had it’s own processing facility on sight. Everything from planting, to harvesting, to producing the olive oil and bottling it was all done at this single location. They were able to store over fifty thousand gallons in their facilities at one single time. And that’s a breathtaking number to think about. This location prided themselves in their extra virgin olive oil that they bottled and sold. This process, explained by our professors, takes much longer and actually decreases the amount of olive oil that you can extract from each olive. But in return, you have a pure olive oil that has the appropriate aroma and content so that it’s a healthier, and tastier, alternative to regular olive oil. Not seeing many olive trees in America, it was truly a unique experience to go out and see a large scale operation where they had over fourteen thousand olive trees in production. It was even more incredible to be able to go behind the scenes and see just how they did it. The photo at the top is from where we participated in a tasting test to taste the difference varieties of olive oil they produced. That is only part of the operation and a lot of their trees are over three hundred years old!