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11 Pounds Of Olives Are Used To Produce 32 Ounces Of Extra Virgin Olive Oil


With the health benefits of olive oil on everyone’s lips and the movement toward more flavorful tastes, the time is right for this 8,000 year old tradition to become an irresistible, national force. Small wonder! September 30, is National Extra Virgin Olive Oil Day

Olive oil is the gold standard of all oils. Loaded with antioxidants, it is monounsaturated fat and everyone needs fat in his or her diet. The Mediterranean Diet is considered the healthiest diet. The cornerstone and foundation of the Mediterranean Diet is extra virgin olive oil.

Ever since our first “foodie” President Thomas Jefferson proclaimed, “ . . . the olive tree is surely the richest gift of heaven” and deemed olive oil a “necessity of life” (along with wine and books), olive oil was destined to have it’s own National Extra Virgin Olive Oil Day.

  • Extra virgin olive oil is a grade of olive oil not a flavor.
  • In order to produce one quart (32 ounces) of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 11 pounds of olives need to be pressed.
  • Olive oil itself is naturally cholesterol, sodium, and carbohydrate-free.
  • On average, an olive tree can live between 300 and 600 years.
  • All olives start out green and then turn black or a dark purple as they ripen.
  • On average, the world consumes approximately 2.25 million tons of olive oil each year.
  • The annual consumption of olive oil in the United States increased from 30 million gallons to nearly 70 million gallons a year in the last two decades.
  • Processing olives below 86 degrees Fahrenheit keeps their aroma and oxidation levels intact.
  • There are three towns and one city in the U.S. that are named “Olive Branch.”
  • Of all the olive oil produced in the United States, California is responsible for producing 99% of it.
  • During the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, the old tradition of crowning Olympians with olive sprays was brought back to life. Over 2,550 olive branches were utilized to revive this tradition.
  • The flags of seven nations, four U.S. states, and the United Nations themselves all feature an olive branch.
  • Greece is the world’s third largest producer of olive oil and the world’s largest exporter of extra virgin olive oil.  Its extra virgin olive oil is so good that it is exported even to countries such as Italy and Spain.
  • Extra virgin olive oil comes from the first pressing of the olives with no chemicals used to extract the oil.  This means it has a wonderful, fresh, clean taste.
  • The fresher the olive oil, the better the taste.  After a year or so, oil is best used for cooking and fresh oil used for salad dressings and other cold uses.
  • Because oil flows from the olives naturally when they are crushed, the vitamins and natural ingredients are not destroyed with chemicals and preservatives.
  • Greek people use an average of 6.8 gallons of olive oil each every year!
  • Extra virgin olive oil can reduce inflammation.
  • Most olive oils have a low smoke point, meaning that they aren’t appropriate for sauteing meats and vegetables.
  • Light Destroys Olive Oil. Have you ever wondered why olive oil typically comes in a dark green bottle? It’s because light destroys olive oil through oxidation, changing the beneficial chemical compounds and exchanging antioxidants for free radicals. Keep olive oil out of the light, and make sure you only buy the product in a dark bottle.
  • Vintage Is A Term Used For Both Wines And Olive Oil. While vintage is a term used for both wines and olive oil, there is a big difference: Olive oil does not get better with age.
  • Olive Oil Is Essentially A Fruit Juice. Olives are fruit, and olive oil is that fruit’s juice. Juice is never better than when it’s fresh squeezed and drank right after production.


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