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Most of Antequera's extra virgin olive oil is sent to China and the rest to Northern Europe

Harvesting the olives in Antequera.
Harvesting the olives in Antequera. / SUR
  • Over 95 per cent of the EVOO produced in Antequera is exported to Asia to satisfy the demand by Chinese consumers

The Denominación de Origen Protegido (DOP) Antequera protects the extra virgin olive oil produced in the north of the province. It is the only EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil) with a DOP seal in the province, but it is practically unknown by the locals. Antequera's oil is well appreciated, however, by consumers in China where over 95 per cent of the annual production is sent, according to Victoria Olmedo, secretary general for the Regulatory Board of the DOP Antequera.

Under the protection of this board are EVOOs from Cañete La Real, Almargen, Teba, Campillos, Sierra Yeguas, Fuente Piedra, Antequera, Humilladero, Mollina, Alameda, Palenciana (Cordoba), Cuevas Bajas, Cuevas de San Marcos, Villanueva de Algaidas, Villanueva del Trabuco, Archidona, Villanueva del Rosario and Villanueva de Tapia.

Last year (the 2017-2018 campaign), 634,700 kilogrammes with the DOP label were produced for commercial markets. This year the total is expected to reach 700,000 kilogrammes.

Extra virgin olive oil DOP Antequera is produced mainly from Hojiblanca olives with other varieties including Picual or Marteño, Arbequina, Picudo, Lechín de Sevilla or Zozaleño, Gordal de Archidona, Verdial de Vélez-Málaga and Verdial de Huévar.

To be classified as DOP Antequera the olives have to be healthy and recently picked and the resulting oil should have a range of fruity aromas (besides that of green olives) such as almond, banana and green herbs. The intensity of the aromas varies between medium and high.

It should feel light in the mouth with bitter and spicy notes of low to medium intensity and which co-exist, in perfect harmony, with slightly sweet flavours. The colour can vary, depending on when and where the olives were picked, from golden to greeny-yellow.