Throughout history, olive oil has been widely considered as a source of health, youth and strength. In ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome, people made various medicines and cosmetic products by mixing olive oil with different flowers and herbs. Until 1970's, for people who were not of Mediterranean origins, olive oil remained as the charm of the Mediterranean countries used only in exclusive local dishes and set aside in the back shelves of the "authentic" culinary products sections in markets. During such times when almost all dishes in the Mediterranean cuisine were made with olive oil, Western consumers became acquainted with this product mostly in restaurants. In Turkey, there are nearly 100 million productive olive trees and 500,000 families earn their living from olive cultivation. In our country, olive oil production varies in line with the alternation of high crop and low crop years in olive production. Turkey is the fifth largest olive oil producer after Spain, Italy, Greece and Tunisia. Its average annual production is approximately 140,000 tons. While 60,000 tons of this quantity is consumed domestically, the rest is exported.
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