Olive Harvesting in Slovenia
I had intended to get this posted yesterday, but I was called in to substitute at my girl's school and I am not so good at getting everything accomplished when a wrench is thrown into my routine. But, I enjoy being in the school, so when they call I go in.
So, our tennis trainer, Erik is from Slovenia and one day he offered me some olive oil from his family farm. He then began telling me about the yearly harvest and how the family comes together for a few days of hard work, his grandpa cooks and how much fun they have together. His face really beamed with joy as he recalled the memories. Over the summer he sent me pictures of the ripening fruit and when I asked him if we could join the family when it came time to harvest the olives he was delighted!
I use olive oil and I love eating olives, but really, I know nothing about how they are grown or harvested. We've also never done any sort of agri-tourism, so I didn't know how the girls would respond to WORK as a form of vacation, especially since they dread working in the garden at home.
After dinner we took a tour of one of the local olive oil factories. I was impressed at how quickly the turn around time is. In Spain and Italy olives can sit in the store house for weeks before being pressed, but Slovenian olives are turned around in 24 hours. That is largely because Slovenia isn't a competitor in the world market of olives and simply doesn't have as many to process. According to our guide, Slovenian oil is not exported, but wholly used within the country.
1. Cold pressed oil is pressed at 27*c. Higher heat extracts more oil, but losses aroma, vitamins and quality.
2. The entire olive, pit and all is pressed through a grinder then mulled around until the oil begins to separate from water and solids.
3. Entire process from olive to oil takes only 60 minutes.
I am linking up at A Southern Daydreamer