FAQS

Why Portugal?

The majority of the groves are located in Portugal due to the abundance of fresh water, cheap land and labor costs, availability of experienced personnel as well as security over land title and rule of law.

Why SHD?

Our grove manager was one of the pioneers of the Super High Density technique and it provides extreme levels of control over the olive groves during the growing stages. It is also highly efficient for harvesting as the olives are collected at only 3% wastage. The manner of their collection also means they are less bruised and can be transported to the mill quickly to consistently produce oil at the highest possible quality (0.1% acidity).

What makes Innoliva different?

Almost 95% of all olive oil produced worldwide is done so on small holdings or farms of about 5 – 10 hectares using very old olive trees. This practice creates an extremely fragmented market and a highly inefficient industry with costs of production being very high. Co-operatives have tried to make blended EVOO from hundreds of different producers but it is extremely difficult with hundreds of different varieties of olives and oil qualities being supplied to them. Innoliva recognised this inefficiency and used a pioneering Super High Density planting technique to modernise and industrialise the olive oil making process to consistently produce olive oil at 0.2% acidity or lower on a vast scale covering 8000 hectares and growing.

Where are they based?

Innoliva has 8000 hectares of groves in Spain and Portugal with the majority in the Alentejo region of Portugal. The head office is based in Pamplona.

Where can I buy Innoliva products?

Innoliva olive oil is only available in a few selected shops in Spain as 99% of our product is sold in bulk however, we have an online store where you can purchase bottled Innoliva products.

How much olive oil do Innoliva produce?

Innoliva produces around 9000 tonnes of EVOO per year.

Principal Producers and Markets?

Spain produces about 50% of the worlds olive oil with Italy and Greece the 2nd and 3rd largest producers respectively. The vast majority of olive oil is consumed in Southern Europe but the fastest growing markets for olive oil are in the USA, China and Japan.

TERMINOLOGY

EVOO

Extra Virgin Olive Oil – the highest-grade olive oil categorised at below 0.8% acidity.

VOO

Virgin Olive Oil – Medium grade olive oil between 0.9 – 2.0% acidity.

Lampante/ Pomace Oil

Low grade olive oil. Anything above 2.0% acidity. Often blended with bio diesel.

SHD

Super High Density: refers to the number of Olive trees per hectare SHD is between 1000 – 2200 trees per hectare. Skinny trees planted in rows about 1.3 metres apart. Very new technique only used in mass production to be harvested by “over the row” harvesters.

Harvest

Starts in October (or when the olives are ready) and for Innoliva, continues until the end of December. Using converted “over the row” grape harvesters they harvest the olives 24 hours a day for 3 months. The quality of the olive oil is highly dependent on the time it takes to get the olives (once picked) from the groves through the processing mill, due to oxidation. Typically, 2 hrs to complete the process gives you the highest quality oil.

Pruning

Happens year round and is a mixture of mechanical pruning with a tractor and pruning by hand which is far more effective but highly labour intensive.

Alqueva

Refers to the reservoir and Dam systems that feed Innoliva’s olive groves with water. It is the largest man-made lake in Europe and has enough capacity to provide its basin with water for 4 years without a single drop of rain. It has an integrated network of fully pressurised irrigation channels as well as a high capacity hydro-electric power plant.

HD

High Density: much bigger trees again planted in rows but typically 500 – 1000 trees per hectare.

Traditional

Planting technique that occupies the vast majority of the olive oil industry on plots typically 5 – 10 hectares. Between 10 and 300 very large very old trees per hectare.

Floration period

Starts in March and continues to about May. Is a vital/nervous period in the olive oil growing calendar. Too much/little rain during this time can massively effect the olive harvest at the end of the year.

Pollination

Period immediately following the Floration period in May where the flowers are pollinated by insects and wind. Good pollination will give you a good harvest.

Maturation

Period from the end of May to October where the olives grow and ripen on the trees absorbing as much sun and water as possible.

Mill

The Mill is the processing plant where olives are converted into Olive Oil. It is fully owned and operated by Innoliva and is located in the middle of their groves.

Envero

Envero is a term used in viticulture to indicate one of the phases of the olive’s ripening cycle