OLIVE OIL TOURISM IN SPAIN

ORIGINS OF OLIVE OIL
The olive tree and the oil obtained from its fruits have accompanied the history of humanity. From the beginning, the olive tree has been present in the history of men; not only in rituals, but also in different ways of daily life, as olive oil was used to enrich food,  in various massage techniques and cosmetics or as fuel for lamps.
 

extra virgin olive oil : source- diario ABC
 
The origin of olive cultivation is uncertain. It is thought that the first oil crop was developed in an unknown region between Palestine and Egypt around XIV b.c. During this time, the technologies of extraction of olive oil were gradually purified. Consequently, the olive oil becomes a substance of capital importance. Meanwhile, oil production was moved to other parts of Europe through ceramic amphoras and leather wineskins, thanks to development and progress of civilizations as the Roman Empire. During the middle age, olive oil was scarce in such a way that, in certain cases, it was considered cash. From the 5th century onwards, state oil control began to disappear and the religious orders become to be owners of the olive groves, leaving olive oil consumption for the upper classes and the cleric.
 
BENEFITS
Today the olive tree has spread beyond the Mediterranean zones, to all continents except Antarctica. There are olive groves in South Africa, in China and Vietnam, in Southern Oceania, throughout America, keeping world total production of olive oil growing since the early 20th century. Furthermore, it has been noticed that olive oil has plenty of benefits for the human being, since it keeps cholesterol levels low, protects the heart, prevents from strokes and aging, apart from other many benefits
 

 olive harvesting: source-junta de Andalucía
                                          
OLIVE OIL TOURISM TODAY
Spain is one of most important producers of olive oil in the world. For Spain, olive oil means, an important source of wealth and a symbol of its culture and gastronomy. In some rural areas have emerged new activities related to olive oil tourism. For instance, tourist can experience olive oil routes, visiting villages that reflect a culture associated with the olive grove, with a peculiar architecture of their farmhouses, as well as, a strong tradition. It is also possible to visit oil presses (mills where olive oils are squeezed), or to participate in tastings and learn about the whole process of production of virgin olive oil through specialized museums, combining the visit of important cities. Úbeda and Baeza are good examples (cities whose monumental renaissance collections are declared world heritage by the UNESCO). Andalucía, is a region that dedicates over 1.5 million hectares to the olive, accounting for 35% of the olives cultivated throughout the European Union. Nevertheless, tourist can also experience this olive oil tourism in other regions as Catalonia, Extremadura or Castilla La Mancha.
 
 
 almazara Núñez de Prado. source-caminos de pasión
                                                
across spain offers olive oil tourism packages, do not hesitate to contact us!