Syrian olive oil production to double

Syrian olive oil production is expected to double in the 2019/20 crop year to reach 150,000 tonnes, a 50% increase compared with the previous and the largest production total since 2013/14.

Syria had been involved in a bloody civil war since 2011 and was one of the main battlefronts against the Islamic State from 2014 until earlier this year, Olive Oil Times wrote on 22 August.

Mohamed Habou, director of the Olives Office at the Syrian Ministry of Agriculture, attributed the production rise to decreased fighting in the country and the government reclaiming olive groves from rebel fighters.

Climatic conditions were also expected to be slightly higher this year. High heat and humidity last year led to a spread of olive fruit flies, damaging a lot of olives from re-established groves.

The Syrian government was currently working on implementing measures to promote olive cultivation and oil production, including training seminars for farmers and producers as well as investing in milling technology, Olive Oil Times reported.