Oil prices are close to the barrier of 4 euros, but are still far from the Italian 6 euros

The prices of olive oil at source seem to have no brake – each week they advance, slowly but inexorably – and the extra virgins are heading towards the psychological threshold of 4 euros, far from the ceiling reached in August 2015 (4, 23 euros) and Italy, where they approach 6 euros.


Producers, cooperatives and mills profit from this bonanza, which, on the contrary, can lead to an unsustainable situation for the packers and even, in a short space of time, extort the exports, which until now are the ones that «throw» the product.


In 2016, foreign trade has gone «like silk» but in markets like the British, which accuses the devaluation of the pound, «liquid gold» has become a product as expensive as inaccessible for many, even for Mediterranean restaurants.

The decline in olive oil yields in Spain, the lower harvests in other producing countries, and the good performance of exports, which have so far resisted despite high prices, are in favor of the increases.

The director of the Association of the Industry and Trade Exporter of Olive Oil (Asoliva), Rafael Pico, says that this campaign will be «very difficult» for these companies because they have complicated to transfer the strong increases of prices of the raw material to the international market , Especially in third countries.

A part of the agricultural sector thinks that the projected capacity of 1.38 million tonnes will not be reached, although there is sufficient availability to meet the demand currently, especially in Italy, which urges more and more oil after its poor harvest.

POOLred collects between February 18 and 24 a total of 59 purchase and sale operations between mills and traders for 4,565 tons of oil at an average price of 3.79 euros per kilo.

The extra virgins gained 0.57% in the period, and are already paid at 3.88 euros per kilo; The virgins rose by 0.34% to 3.79 euros / kg and the lampantes do the +1.09% to 3.70 euros.

On Friday 24, commercial agents went out to buy extra virgin from 3,772 euros / kg, according to Infaoliva (mills). From 13 to 19 February, the extra virgin was paid at 380 euros / 100 kg in Badajoz; 375 in Ciudad Real; 379,50 in Córdoba; 382 in Granada; 382.82 in Jaen; 376,13 in Málaga; 385 in Seville; 397.50 in Tarragona and 374 euros / 100 kilos in Toledo, the Mapama reported.

Crude oil rose 5.91% to 161.91 euros / 100 kg while refined sunflower oil rose 0.39% weekly and stands at 85.59 euros / 100 kilos, according to the same official source .

The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Food and Environment (Mapama) notes that in a global context of supply reduction and stable consumption, prices at source «have been remunerative», although in Spain they are below other markets -Italy or Tunisia-and far from August 2015 levels.

Specifically, the national production of oil so far this year (October to January) amounts to 1,072,700 tons, 14% less than the previous one, despite the fact that the first month of 2017 obtained 518,200 tons, The highest in recent years.

Total marketing of olive oil stood at 488,300 tonnes, 18% more, driven by exports (309,500 tonnes, +31%), as the domestic market remained stable (at 178,800 tonnes), according to known data This week.


The general secretary of UPA-Jaén, Cristóbal Cano, points out that more than 90% of the harvest has already been collected in the province, the first national production, to be completed by the end of this month.

«It remains to be seen if we reach the reported figures, but if we do, it will be very fair», due to the lower fatty yields of the olives, says Cano. José Ramón Díaz (Asaja) explains to Efeagro that the merit of Spanish exports is, at least in part, circumstantial, that is, the fall of the harvest in other olive-growing countries. Asaja estimates the production for the year by 1.3 million tonnes and, thus, the figures of the capacity of the Junta de Andalucía will not be reached because the yields are lower than expected. «I do not think we get to the figures that marked the capacity,» shares Gregorio Lopez (COAG), who adds that it is most likely not to exceed 1.2 million tonnes. At least, he insists, after three campaigns with «ruinous» prices, now the olive growers get reasonable prices and can settle debts. But exporters warn: If the high cost of the raw material expands over time, foreign sales will slow down, and they will do so abruptly, which will not be good for anyone in this sector, nor for producers.



Autor entrada: Francisco Camacho