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Extra virgin: Spain queen of production, Italy overtaken by Greece

Italian consumption up by almost 6%, exports equal to 3.3%

Italy loses the second step of the podium of the world production of extra virgin olive oil. In fact, behind the giant Spain capable of producing 1.6 million tons, Greece rises, which according to data provided by the European Commission should close the 2020/2021 campaign around 265 thousand tons of oil produced. Italy, on the other hand, is in third place with less than 250 thousand tons of extra virgin olive oil, due to the sharp decline in the most important olive growing regions such as Puglia, Calabria and Sicily. The good news, however, comes from the consumption of extra virgin olive oil, which in a difficult year due to the pandemic is growing in our country by almost 6%, the trade balance is also positive: there is an increase in the level of exports equal to 3,3% and a reduction in imports of 9.2%.

In terms of prices, on the other hand, Italian extra virgin olive oil retains the primacy compared to international competitors, but also in this case the cyclical nature of the harvest is influencing. "The data on production testify that the time has come to renew national olive growing, which must open up to innovative and sustainable models capable of guaranteeing a peaceful future", explains the president of Italia Olivicola, Fabrizio Pini. "In this sense, we count on the commitment of the new minister Patuanelli, to whom we express our best wishes, who will be called to work on a strategic national olive-growing plan useful for closing the gap with other countries and indicating which path we will have to take to increase production, preserve the quality and maintain competitiveness".

"In such a difficult year, sharing the appeal of other organizations such as Assitol, we believe it is our duty to enhance the producers who work for quality and the companies that focus on real Italian extra virgin olive oil", continues Pini. "For this reason it is necessary that everyone row on the same side, from politics to large distribution, to relaunch one of the most important products of Made in Italy".

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EFA News - European Food Agency