Lebanese Olives and Olive Oil
Arrange the olives in a large jar, cover with water, and let soak for at least 10 days – changing out the water every day to maintain optimal results.
Many newcomers to Lebanon challenged some traditions that prevented them from meeting international quality standards (Willani and House of Zejd), while others were more focused on profitability (Bustan el Zeitoun, Morkos). Their results have been interesting.
Early Life and Education
Olives and olive oil were essential components of all Mediterranean cultures, from lamp fuel and breadmaking to pharmaceutical treatments and cosmetic solutions for skin and hair health, ritualistic anointment of royalty and warriors before battles, as well as serving as lamp fuel itself.
Early nurserymen and agriculturists selected varieties that bore early, produced heavy yields year after year, and thrived even on poor soils in arid regions. Over time, cultivation has spread all around the world.
Early methods of olive oil production involved pressing fruit through layers of filter mats alternating with metal disks under pressure to extract oil (Alba Mendoza, 2001). More modern systems involve isolating oxygen from malaxation tanks in order to limit enzyme activity that breaks down polyphenols and oxidizes oils (Alba Mendoza, 2001).
Olive oil holds a special place in Lebanese culture and cuisine, often used in the preparation of traditional dishes such as hummus, beans and labneh. Furthermore, its use as both cosmetics and medicines makes olive oil indispensable.
Lebanon’s geographical diversity and soil quality allow it to produce olive oils with distinctive characteristics, while its microclimates enable farmers to harvest olives at different times throughout the year.
Olive oil quality and composition can be affected by environmental, agricultural and processing variables, which includes geographical origin, harvesting time and processing system variables. The current study seeks to understand these influences on olive oil quality and composition.
Achievement and Honors
Lebanon stands as one of the primary hubs of olive growing in the eastern Mediterranean. Its rich history, diverse terrain and rain-fed soil create ideal conditions for producing premium olive oils.
Olive oil produced in this region is renowned for its high phenolic content and low free acidity levels, and is revered by local agronomists, who take great pride in maintaining ancestral heritage and its preservation.
Rose Bechara, an agronomist in Lebanon, stands out as a prime example. Her efforts to amplify agricultural products from around the country have attracted notice and admiration on multiple occasions. She specializes in producing green cracked olives that not only are nutritious but delicious too – she produces them specifically to add zesty flavors into dishes like hummus, beans and labneh!
Olives are one of the main sources of healthy fats in a Mediterranean diet and provide abundant amounts of antioxidants, helping protect the body against various diseases. Their moisturizing properties also keep skin healthy and hydrated, offering another layer of defense.
Olive trees are naturally drought resistant, but require regular irrigation. As temperatures heat up and water supply changes, farmers are forced to spend more for irrigation in order to preserve their olive crops.
Lebanon is famous for their exquisite olive oil, which they incorporate into nearly every dish they prepare. Families in Lebanon regularly preserve or salt olives to use over an extended period. Olive oil also makes an excellent gift idea for anyone interested in healthy foods.
The olive tree has long been seen as a symbol of peace, its production driving a $3 billion global industry. An essential ingredient in Mediterranean diet, olives also held cultural significance among ancient societies from Egypt to Greece.
Village farmers play an essential role in modern Lebanon’s olive oil industry, yet many struggle to turn a profit. Their olive oil is sold through small shops at prices out of reach for most Lebanese due to a monthly minimum wage of 9 million Lebanese pounds.
Willani and House of Zejd are modernizing traditional practices by purchasing olives from multiple sources before pressing them under one brand. Their large scale allows them to invest in high-end equipment that complies with international quality standards.