The rise in olive oil prices in recent months, as a result of a reduction in the harvest and greater foreign demand, has caused a decrease in sales of packaged product in Spain. These were 163,000 tons in the first half of the year, compared to 173,000 tons in the same period of 2020, which represents a reduction of 7.5%, according to data managed by the employers.
Computed operations fundamentally affect sales in large distribution. The employer organization brings together industries that account for more than 70% of the sector’s sales in distribution, but it does not include a large part of cooperative entities with sales at origin in the oil mills themselves. The data managed by the management also show a stop in the process of increasing sales that extra virgin oil was registering in favor of other cheaper oils such as virgin or the one known simply as olive oil, mild or intense. that mixes virgin and refined oil.
The behavior of sales responds to the rise in prices since last October, when the current campaign began, to date. In this period, prices at source went from 2.1 euros to 3.3 euros per kilo for extra virgin oil, from two to three euros for a virgin oil and from 1.9 euros to three euros for a lampante or lampante type oil. lower quality. The reasons for the increase are the forecast of a declining harvest of less than 1.4 million tons and the low productions in third countries, which boosted Spanish exports. This has translated into average sales prices of the oil to the consumer of 3.50 euros per liter for a virgin and four euros for an extra virgin.
The decline in demand in the domestic market is also due to the crisis derived from the pandemic, due to the economic difficulties in many households. It is also estimated that the national consumer continues to consider olive oil as a very own product, but that it should not have a high price, which is still not recognized its differentiated quality despite all the campaigns to support its consumption paid. by the interprofessional organization, olive growers and industrialists.
If the focus is broadened and the calculation is made from the beginning of the campaign, in October, until June, sales have reached 248,000 tons, with a somewhat lower cut of 2.64% compared to the same period of the previous campaign . If the calculation is made with the last twelve months, in June there was a sales increase of 0.26% with 356,000 tons, compared to 355,000 tons between July 2019 and June 2020.