Green olive oil refers to the olive oil produced by pressing the first unripe olives which preserve their green color. It is the first obtained olive oil of the year and is extracted by pressing the first olives when they are still white (immature) and secondly when the olives begin to change color (being mature). The ancient Greeks used to call it omotrives or omfakio.
In Greece, green olive oil is produced mainly by organic farming, by gathering olives from early October to November. Immature olives have unique characteristics both at the flavor and nutritional value with significant health benefits.
A slice of bread or a greek salad is enough to enjoy the wonderful taste and unique properties of green olive oil every season.
How to distinguish green olive oil
In contrast with other types of olive oil, green olive oil is distinguished by its bright green color which is due to the big amount of chlorophyll in olives. Green olive oil has an intensively bitter taste and fruity aroma that refers to a freshly picked unripe olive. This bitterness that “burns” the palate, makes it special and at the same point not pleasant for everyone. Its unique taste can be kept for a short period of time (few months).
Why green olive oil is more expensive
Green olive oil, unlike other types of olive oils, contains a higher concentration of oleacin and oleocanthal, two oil bioactives that are promising therapeutic agents, due to anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and cardioprotective properties.
In recent years, green olive oil is broadly known in the international market due to its high nutritional and medical value, and in many cases, its final cost is twice the price of conventional olive oils. Its higher price is since, the early harvest and export in the mills of the green olive oil are significantly lower in production than other types of olive oils.
Benefits for olive oil producers
Early harvest of green olive oil can benefit the cultivation of olive trees, as it helps to reduce the intensity of alternate bearing. Alternate bearing in olive trees is a phenomenon in which a year of high production is followed by a year of lower production.
Furthermore, the early harvest of olives is beneficial on lower acidity and quality of olive oil, as the infestation by dacus and fungal diseases (such as gloeosporium) is reduced.
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