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EVOO Articles


Commencing mid autumn the olive fruit is monitored for ripeness. This is initially done by slicing some olives to see how far the colour of the olive skin has penetrated into the flesh or simply by hand crushing to feel how oily the flesh is.  Sample batches of olives may also be sent to a laboratory to be analysed for oil content.


Harvesting early tends to produce a lower yield but more pungent robust oil, harvesting later tends to produce a higher yield & a lighter softer oil. The oil aroma, pungency and taste also depend on the cultivar and local soil and climatic conditions - our terroir. As we have several cultivars planted and we aim to produce the highest quality extra virgin olive oil, the actual harvesting can extend over a six to ten week period.


A tree shaker is used to harvest the olives to ensure sufficient fruit is available each afternoon to immediately process in one batch.  This ensures that the olives are not left sitting in crates waiting for a sufficient quantity to be processed (typically the case for hand-picked olives) where they can overheat & commence to oxidise.


The tree shaker clamps rubber jaws around the tree trunk, then extends an inverted umbrella catching net around the tree. The jaws vibrate in a small cyclic motion, first in one direction and then in the other. Olives are quickly shaken from the tree into a bin located beneath the jaws. Typically it only take about one minute to shake a tree & move to the next. When the bin is full the olives are emptied into vented crates. When the creates are full they are transported to the on-site processing facility.



 A fork-lift fitted with a forward tipping unit empties the crates which hold upto 450kg of olives into a large intake hopper where a conveyor feeds them past a leaf extraction fan and into a special olive washing facility.


After washing a modern hammer mill uses stainless steel hammers rotating at a high speed to crush the olives into a paste.


The paste is fed into a malaxing unit (like a big horizontal kneading machine) where it is gently stirred/mixed. Both the duration & temperature of the malaxing process are closely monitored to ensure true ‘cold processing’ is achieved.


At the completion of the malaxing process, the olive paste is transferred by a mono pump to a horizontal decanter which is used to remove the solids from the liquids, then a high-speed vertical separator removes any remaining water.


 The pure extra virgin olive oil finally flows into a holding tank and the solids (pomace) is conveyed outside to an external pit. The pomace is later composted to be spread back onto the grove.


 The extra virgin olive oil is transferred from the holding tank & is stored in 1000L air-tight foil lined containers or in large 5000L stainless steel storage tanks where it is covered with a nitrogen blanket.


 After the oil has been allowed to settle for a few weeks, bottling, labelling and packaging is done on-site inside an air-conditioned stainless steel shipping container.

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