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The History of the Olive Tree

 

Believed to be a native of Asia Minor, the story of this ancient tree has been linked from time immemorial to the history of mankind itself.

The tree is mentioned for the first time in the book of Genesis, when the dove returns to the ark with an olive branch for Noah, as proof of the end of the flood.

The Egyptians, the Ancient Greeks and the Romans all gave thanks to their gods for this productive tree and its versatile fruit. In fact, olives remain today an essential part of the celebrated Mediterranean diet.

The Olive tree is a symbol throughout the world for peace, wisdom and plenty.

The olive tree is hardy tree that can thrive on any soil. However, it cannot survive in damp and cold conditions. Its ideal habitat, therefore, are regions with a typically Mediterranean climate, of mild Winters and long, hot Summers.

The yield of the Olive Tree depends directly on how well it is cared for by its owner. A tree that is properly pruned and irrigated will return one's efforts a hundredfold in appreciation.

There are an estimated 800 million olive trees in the world, bearing an annual volume of around 7.8 million metric tonnes of fruit, of which 7.2 million tonnes are used to produce olive oil and some 600 million tonnes are prepared as Table Olives.

Throughout the ages, olives and their oil have become part of the way of life of innumerable civilizations and have contributed to health and beauty, both inside and out.

Reference: International Vegetable Oil Industry Council / Madrid.

 

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