Olive oil production process has undergone small changes over time, most of which have little to do with the process itself, but with individual issues or the means we use to reach the desired result. The production of olive oil is the last link in the chain of olive cultivation.
Apart from ripening of the fruit, harvest starts when appropriate climatic conditions exist. We are not only interested in the maturity of the fruit, but we also make sure through the laborious process of olive harvesting that the tree is ready to give fruits. This process is in fact a health and endurance test for the viability of the olive tree.
Olive fruit ripens in mid to late autumn and then the harvest begins. Olive harvest remains for centuries a significant agricultural activity in many Mediterranean regions.
The quality depends on the proper care of olive trees and on harvesting the fruit at the right time. This time varies depending on the geographical area of each olive grove. When quality is the goal, the fruit harvest costs are higher.
The harvest is one of the most important stages of olive cultivation. It is carried out mechanically and with great care. At harvest, the fruit must not come in contact with the ground, and should be transferred to the mill directly without loss of time. Harvest is carried out at the proper stage of fruit maturity.
Olives, after their arrival at the oil mill which is certified in accordance with the Council Regulation (EC) No 834/2007, are washed with clean water and then they are put in the crusher where the fruit is crushed. From there they proceed to the kneader where olive paste is kneaded. Next stage uses to the centrifugal separator to remove the stone (pit) and the olive’s solid components. Last stage is the oil–water separation.
The above process is performed in a certified organic olive oil mill, at a water temperature below 27 degrees. The low temperature is crucial for the quality and preservation of the nutrients and qualities of the olive oil. The virgin final product, which began its journey last December, is stored in stainless steel tanks exclusively for use of olive oil until the day of the standardization.
The standardization of olive oil is a major factor ensures the authenticity and quality of the final product. The extra virgin olive oil, a totally natural product is extracted by the mill without any additional treatment or mixture. Packaging is performed as quality assurances require.
The storage method is essential in order to maintain the natural flavour, colour, taste and valuable components of olive oil. Oil deteriorates with exposure to sunlight, heat and humidity. From the moment of the harvest of the fruit until the time of its standardization, oil extraction conditions follow suitable stricted procedures. Fresh oil is rested for two months in sealed, stainless steel tanks where it is clarified naturally. Finally it is standardized in bottles of 250ml, 500ml, 750ml, or containers of 5lt.