Olive & Oil 30/09/2015

Forecasts for olive oil production in the campaign 2015/16

For the second year olive oil world production will be lower than the demand. Spain and Italy recovered but do not shine. Tunisia will face a campaign halved. Greek smiles. The forecast indicate possible tensions on prices

After the 2014/15 gave us the oil campaign thinner for Italy since the war, with less than 200 thousand tons produced, and the end of the myth of Spain icrollabile, with its production that has not touched the 900 thousand tons Tte oil campaign 2015/16 was to be that of redemption and abundance.
So it will not be.

In Italy we expected production fluctuating between 300 and 330 thousand tons. The climate of the next few weeks will affect the degree to become oily, not counting possible, but never desired, bad weather conditions.

Dominating the scene, again, Puglia with a production of 135,000 tons. After a year of discharge and fear Xylella, however, it should be a good year for the heel of Italy. The second Italian olive Region will recover the scepter without ifs or buts. In Calabria, almost everywhere, it is vintage of charge, especially for Carolea cultivar queen of the Region. The 70,000 tons provided they put it firmly in second place. Third place for Sicily, with 40,000 tons estimated. Situation good everywhere.

The Centre-North Italy was affected by the heat wave in flowering / fruit set. The summer drought, together with the African heat, and some climatic aberration has plagued both the Tyrrhenian coast and the Adriatic one. Tuscany and Lazio continue to battle around 12-14 thousand tons, surpassed by the Campania, with production exceeding 20,000 tons. Good campaign in Liguria, where they expect 2,000 tons.

The quality of oil promises good or very good. The olive fly, in fact, hit very rarely, because of the heat waves of Africa. In some areas they are reported olives very dry due to drought, but the situation can change rapidly due to some rain.

In Spain, after the enthusiasm of early spring, with a view of entire groves covered with flowers, the situation has been changing rapidly in the mid summer. Heatwaves, during flowering and fruit set, and persistent drought in some cases in the spring, have strongly influenced the result of production of the Spanish olive oil: Andalusia. In particular, the area around Jaen to have endured the greatest hardships to heat and drought, so the greatest impact on production. To save himself, with a discreet oil campaign is the area of ​​Seville is one of Toledo. Likewise, the Extramadura and Catalonia. Obviously, for the inland areas of Spain, it remains the unknown factor of early frosts that may affect the production, at least that of extra virgin.
Compared to the first estimates, based on flowering, indicating 1.400.000 to 1.500.000 tons, the estimated production have sharply reduced in recent weeks.
Spain will then produce 1.000.000 to 1.200.000 tonnes.
The climate will affect decisively the quality of the oil. In Jaen olives appear much suffering, with relationship pulp / stone absolutely unfavorable, with the risk of having a lack of wood oil.

In Greece, after the exceptional year last year, with a production of 300.000 tons, it will return to more usual levels, to 250.000 tons. Crete suffered most vintage discharge and heat waves, while the area of ​​the Peloponnese shows excellent campaign from the point of view of quantity and of quality.

Year of discharge even in Tunisia that will produce no more than 150 thousand tons of oil, after coming close to 300.000 last year. To the north, the region of the quality, the oil campaign promises good, with rains coming at the right time and healthy olives. Reduction in both qualitative and quantitative, however, in central southern Tunisia, particularly in the area of Sfax.

Campaign instead is absolutely regular in Morocco, with a production of 90 to 100 thousand tons, and in Portugal, with 80 to 90 thousand tons. In Portugal in particular are witnessing the start of production of new olive groves, with Arbequina and Koroneiki that seem to promise good quality oils.

Even in Turkey it is expected a normal year, with a production of 170-180 thousand tons.

World production of olive oil is then less than 3 million tons for the second consecutive year, an unexpected situation for all stakeholders. The 3 million tons are considered to be the minimum for the market equilibrium between supply and demand.
To this situation is added the lack of stock. Inventories, at the level of the Mediterranean basin, may, at the beginning of the campaign, to be less than 200,000 tons, of which about half in Spain.
Stocks, then, unlike last year, can not compensate for the loss of production and therefore moderate prices.
Given the situation is unlikely a fall in prices in the medium term which will remain at current levels.

di Alberto Grimelli, Marcello Scoccia