The harvesting time is an important quality feature.
The normal harvesting period begins when the olives change their color from green to red-violet. Normally this occurs from October to February.
The early harvests interrupt the ripening. This results in green olives and the olive oil taste is significantly more intense, fresh, green and spicy. Early harvesting, together with a hand-picked harvest produce a lower quantity of olive oil and increase its price. However, the result of this process produces really great oil!
In late harvest you get dark violet or black olives.
A distinction is made between the manual and more mechanized harvesting. Manual harvesting is very time consuming, personnel intensive and represents a significant cost factor in the production of an olive oil.
Körbe für die Oliven/ Netze liegen aus /Rechen stehen bereit
The following are the different methods used in harvesting the olives:
Nets are stretched or strained under the trees, and the olives are separated from the branches by means of sticks and combs. The olives, together with leaves, small branches and other impurities, fall on to the nets, and are then transported in sacks to the oil mill.
By hand-picking, the fruits are not damaged and the proportion of leaves or small branches, as well as other impurities are significantly reduced. In addition, a selection of the harvested olives is also possible. This process results in a particularly good quality oil.
Cutting the branches and picking the olives, prepare the tree for the next growing harvest.
Machines are also used in the harvesting of olives. They have the capability of buffeting the whole tree and the vibrations separate the olives from the branches. The olives fall on to the nets and are then filled into sacks. This method cannot be used anywhere since the machines need space and must be able to reach the trees. In addition, there is also controversy over their use from all those involved. Some say that this kind of harvest damages the tree in the long run, since the intensive buffeting can damage the anchoring of the roots. As well, there is probably an impact on the stability, water and nutrient intake of the olive trees.
Netze werden bis zur nächsten Ernte gelagert