Producing our own organic olive oil

When we first moved here in March 2000 our garden and pool area was just a field. The only trees we had were our big pine tree by the car park and the Ash tree in the communal courtyard area.  Over the years we planted trees and shrubs and flowers , our only aim was to landscape and sculpture the area to make it look pretty.  A few years ago we realised that our 11 olive trees were producing a lot of olives and, as a small family run oil pressing business had just opened in a nearby village, we decided to have a go at producing our own oil.  We were surprised at how much oil we got and the flavour was amazing, so fresh and healthy tasting. That first year we picked around 200 kilos and got 50 litres of oil. The people at the factory told us that our oil yield was very high, probably due to the fact that we have to hand pick the trees. Because of all the plants and flowers underneath, we can’t put nets down as the locals do.

The garden when we first moved in 

Over the years our yield has varied slightly , either due to the weather or how many people are picking – sometimes it is just Clive and I , so it is a struggle to pick all the trees within the 3 days we have to get them to the factory while they are still fresh. It does tend to average around 250 to 300 kilos with a yield of between 45 and 50 litres of oil, which is more than enough for us to use ourselves and sell to guests.