Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Spanish Liquid Sunshine from Soler Romero

Most people don't realize that Spain, not Italy, is the largest producer of olive oil in the world. Organic olive oils are becoming increasingly available and one of the largest producers of organic olive oil in Spain is the family-run Soler Romero.

Situated in the Spanish province of Jaen in the southern region of Andalucia—the largest olive and olive oil producing area in Spain—Soler Romero uses only its own olives and does not buy from other farms or cooperatives so as to maintain the strictest control over the quality of their oil. They compost and recycle all the scraps and waste from their olive groves.

In business since 1850, Soler Romero was the first olive farm in Jaen to follow organic farming practices and was also the first to receive organic certification from the USDA in 2002. They also are certified organic by the European Union, Japan, and China as well as the local organic certification area for the region of Andalucia.

The estate's more than 1500 acres produce 700,000 pounds of olive oil every year from the picual olive variety, high in antioxidants, which makes the oil stable. Every stage of the process is performed on the estate, including processing the olives within two hours of harvest making for a very low-acidity oil— 0.10 percent (to be considered extra virgin an oil must be below 0.80 acidity). Soler Romero chooses an early harvest time, between mid-October and mid-November, which they feel results in the perfect oil made with ideally ripened olives.

Soler Romero olive oil is available in Spain, and also in the United States as well as other countries—including the UK, Canada, the Netherlands, Russia, Japan, China and Korea. If you live in Portland, Oregon (or are visiting) you can find Soler Romero oil served at Higgins Restaurant. Badger organic health balms and creams uses Soler Romero organic oil in their organic body-care products.

For more information about Spain's organic olive oils see the Green Earth Guide, Olive Oil: An Olive Oil Lover's Guide to the Organic Oils of Spain, with listings of forty organic oils and tips on having olive oil tastings. Use the Guide to help you tour through olive groves and estates, sampling Spain's liquid sunshine as you travel through Spain.

1 comment:

Lanterns of Hope said...

I've had the good fortune of sampling Spain's olive oil first hand and for me, some of the best came from Andalucia.
I love the fact that you can wander just about anywhere and see olive trees growing in public places. There's something exotic about that.
Since travelling there, aciete has become a staple of our diet - we use it in everything, even smoothies.

Best regards,

Jacob @