The storms that are suffering the southern half of the peninsula have considerably reduced the olive harvest, and above all, oil production and quality. According to experts, this situation may assume a supply shortage and higher prices, especially in extra virgin olive oil, the highest quality, as it requires the product in perfect condition. Some dealers keep prices and ensure product quality again this year, while recognizing that can be prepared with extra virgin olive collected in conventional soil.
Torrential rains and strong winds since the beginning of winter, plague, especially the two main provinces of Spain oilers Jaen and Cordoba is preventing harvest of the olives from the tree and, in many cases has been fallen to the ground flooded with mud and cannot be collected. Early data from the Agency of Olive Oil (AAO) indicated that the weather had reduced oil production by six per cent over the previous season. The Sectoral Council on Olive Oil Cooperative Agro-food, in January predicted a loss of harvest that could range between 10% and 15%, figures similar to those operated by the Young Farmers Agricultural Association. BDA notes that the damage in some areas saw up to 40 percent and, according to the Association Almazaras Provincial de Jaén (Apaja), in late January, had been collected only between 40 and 45 per cent of the olive oil crop in the province of Spain.
This indicates a basic imbalance in this market that are just beginning to glimpse. According to industry sources, the smallest harvest since January contributed to a slight appreciation of the olive oil to 2 euros per kilo, a 7.89% more than the previous week, according to the Pricing System Poolred. According to the responsible national oil ASAJA, Jose Ramon Diaz, the prices "have been adjusted upward in anticipation of market data to suggest that there may be a shortage of oil at the end of the marketing year 2009 – 2010”. In the same opinion is the president of the Sectoral Council Olive Oil Cooperative Agro-food, Rafael Sanchez Puerta, who explains that, production data and the low sales will rise in the domestic market and exports, prices should rise over the marketing year.
For now, the "bio" oil is keeping its prices, largely because organic farming usually works with regular customers and few intermediaries, and this reduces price fluctuations, supply and demand. This production also generates more income for producers and agri-environment allowing billing of the European Union and the autonomous communities.
However, organic prices and market supply will not stay all year taking into account that half of green olive groves have fallen to the ground and the organic extra virgin can only use the fruit harvested from tree. "Prices will probably become more expensive” says Juan Jose Viedma, head of the farm Atanor Valley's oldest "bio" olive groves of Spain “due to supply shortages and rising production costs due Low collection campaign".
The truth is that, according to data from the Andalusian Committee for Organic Farming (CAAE), Spain is the second largest producer of organic oil, with 101,275 hectares of olive certificate (24% of world total), only surpassed by Italy with 109,992 hectares and 28% of world production. However, our country has reached those numbers in just a decade, allowing venture that in 2011 we could be world leaders in this field.
Even different Andalusians oil makers have partnership and created the brand "alamoda" to "dress" the best Spanish oil inside and outside Spain with labels and packaging created by renowned fashion designers. Among others, participated in this campaign, Ángel Schlesser, Antonio Pernas, Davidelfin, Devota & Lomba, Francis Montesinos Juan Duyos.
But the fashion for organic oil today reaches almost all the provinces and communities, including some with little olive oil tradition. Some 300 farmers grow today cu in Huelva, for example, olive green in about 3,600 hectares, divided between the counties of Sierra and County-Country. A few months ago, two new mills have joined this movement that advocates producing extra virgin olive oil: cooperatives Our Lady of Rest of Candon in Beas, and Our Lady of the Port of Zufre will generate for the first time around to 106 tons of olives of Arbequina and Manzanilla varieties.