According to official data, world production in 2015/16 is expected to lie at around 2 900 000 t, about 22 pc higher than in 2014/15. At this point in the crop year it is still too early to judge the accuracy of these estimates but by the time the IOC Council of Members meets at the end of this November, estimates will be more solid unless exceptional weather conditions occur subsequently.
The forecasts for the EU producing member countries of the IOC show that output could reach 1 200 000 t in Spain (+38 pc), 350 000 t in Italy (+58 pc), 320 000 t in Greece (+7 pc) and 92 000 t in Portugal (+51 pc). Among the figures for the rest of the IOC membership, the data for Syria stand out. According to the forecasts of the Syrian authorities, domestic production is expected to amount to 215 000 t (+105 pc). In the same group, production is estimated at 143 000 t for Turkey, 140 000 t for Tunisia, 130 000 t for Morocco and 73 500 t for Algeria. Olive oil production has seen a constant increase in recent years in Algeria where olive crop area has doubled in the last 15 years. Between 2014 and 2015 alone, 20 000 ha of new orchards were planted at a density of 100–120 trees/ha, and the Government of Algeria has unveiled an ambitious scheme to increase olive crop area to 1 000 000 ha.
In the rest of the member countries, production is expected to amount to 159 500 t. As for world consumption, forecasts signal a 5 pc rise on 2014/15 levels (the Syrian authorities expect domestic consumption to be 35 pc higher).
Photo by Luigi Caricato