The olive tree accounts for 25% of the permanent crop of the planet

The olive tree accounts for 25% of the permanent crop of the planet

2019/09/01 - The permanent crop -that is to say, fruit trees, vineyards, cocoa, coffee and olive groves, among others- together represents 48 million hectares, only 3% of the total cultivated land on the planet and just over 1% the cultivable. Of the total permanent crop planted on the planet, almost 25% corresponds to olive groves.
This is one of the conclusions of the "International Olive Growing" manual published in six languages ​​by experts and scientists from around the world, coordinated by Professor Juan Vilar, from the University of Jaén (UJA).

As detailed in this report, currently of the 150 million square kilometers involving the continents, excluding seas and oceans, 30% (4,400 million hectares) is arable land, while 10% (1,530 million hectares) is really cultivated. Of these, 77% are rainfed and 23% are land with water availability.

The permanent majority crop is the olive tree, with 11.6 million hectares of surface distributed throughout 63 countries of the five continents, meaning something more than 0,25% of the total of cultivated lands and something less than 1% of the cultivated land.

Of the total area of ​​olive groves, 70% corresponds to dry land cultivation and 30% to irrigated land. Also, according to this manual, the total number of olive farms distributed throughout the planet is just over 3.5 million, of which 87% are destined for olive oil and 13% for table olives.

Regarding the nature of the crop, 72% corresponds to extensive olive groves, while 28% corresponds to olive grove with a greater range of intensification and efficiency. Of the total area of ​​cultivated olive groves around the world, 6.6% is organic, reaching 765,000 hectares.

While the countries with the greatest availability of cultivated land, in order, are the United States, India, Russia, China, Brazil and Australia; in the olive sector, Spain, Tunisia, Italy, Greece, Morocco and Turkey would stand out. In turn, the study suggests that the largest farm on the planet is located in Australia, while the largest olive farm is located in Tunisia.

Juan Vilar stressed that "olive being the largest permanent crop on the planet is something that will continue to happen for many years, given its annual rate of expansion, which sometimes exceeds 1%, especially in areas where in the past cultivation was nonexistent".
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