This is the result of an international report prepared by the firm Juan Vilar Consultores Estratégicos, for the Guinness Book of Records
Currently, olive growing accounts for 1 percent of the world’s arable land, totaling 11.5 million hectares of olive groves distributed in 58 countries, and making a total of 3.6 million farms with an average area of 3,2 hectares.
The evolution of the surface during the last 5 seasons has resulted in an expansion of more than 1 million hectares, which accounts for a growth equivalent to 40 and 60 percent of the total olive surface area held by Spain and Tunisia.
The majority of this growth, which is 85 percent, has had the form of superintensive olive plantations, and these crops have occupied an extension of 500 thousand hectares, which translates to 4.8% of the total area.
The roots of new olive growing in unusual geographies have brought about a decentralization of the larger farms outside of their usual area of influence.
This relocation is such that none of the 10 largest olive farms in the world are located in Spain, which is the world leader in this field.
The largest olive grove planted in the world is located in Tunis and it has more than 18 thousand hectares of traditional olive groves. However, if we are referring to modern olive groves, the largest olive grove on the planet is located in Saudi Arabia and has just over 7 thousand hectares.
The rest of the largest farms in the ranking are located as such: there are 4 in America, 2 in Asia, 2 in Oceania and 1 in Africa. In total, they represent almost 60 thousand hectares between them, a joint area superior to the total olive surface area that exists in countries such as the United States, Israel, Lebanon, Chile, France, etc. Not only that, this is three times the surface area that is currently being grown on in Oceania.
To find the first olive farm in the ranking based in Spain, we have to go back to 13th place in the analysis.