Changing our ways
In 2016, France experienced once again a catastrophic harvest. While some countries have been able to keep decent profitability rates, France has been falling far behind: France produced an average of 200 liters of oil per hectare compared to 1,000 liters in Spain and Morocco. This gap is can be explained by the repeated use of outdated production methods. Olivier Nasles, the Chairman of AFIDOL, has a categorical verdict on the issue: the 2014 and 2016 harvest revealed a loss of capabilities due to the ageing and disappearance of olive farmers. The world is changing and so is the climate, as a result crop growing methods need to evolve.
A fresh impetus based on two principles to boost the sector
- The professionalization of raw material production: Build a genuinely professional olive production industry. The “family run” olive producers can no longer be at the center of French production.
- Prevail in the battle for productivity: By tripling the productivity, olive growers will recover profit margins meanwhile avoiding an escalation in selling prices.
Two actions areas
- Professionalizing olive production requires that processors are involved upstream. To reach that goal many paths can be explored: Inventory of orchards and their operators, reorganization of farms in order to reach the optimal size of 10 to 20 ha.
- Drawing conclusions from the grand survey on productivity launched last year by AFIDOL. These results compared with the crop-growing practices from high-performing countries should trigger a changeround the crop growing techniques.