High density – lower costs

Olives Dec. 22, 2018

Cost and availability of water is also rising, rainfalls are jeopardized. It may require a small change in growing systems to keep profits going and rising.

The answer is super high-density olive orchards.

A super high-density system is the most advanced, sustainable and productive that can be implemented, especially for new olive orchards.

The system is paramount when it comes to production and it can be used as an extremely mechanized process to minimize costs and increase yields.

It can also be used for other crops like almonds, citrus and fruit trees.

The consumption of extra virgin olive oil is increasing across the world and so is a potential profitable crop for growers.

The use of land for the traditional crops will be progressively reduced due to unsustainable costs and lower profits.

Super high-density olive orchards represent great opportunities for growers to be major players around the word for the production of extra virgin olive oil.

At the moment the countries where this amazing and simple system is in place include Spain, Portugal, Italy, Tunisia, morocco, California and Chile.

Australia is also a growing market due to an increase in interest and consumption for this “yellow gold”.

Agromillora had an exciting year 2018. Its new facilities for plant material acclimatisation are fully operational and it has improved the performance of its production system.

Twelve people of the Agromillora Australia team have been conducting training courses in nursery production processes.

The company has begun to deliver an order for 400,000 Smarttree olive plants to just one client in Australia, who is replacing no longer productive traditional crop with our amazing Arbequina and Arbosana.

Some others are following and the demand for next year has tripled in size.

The main varieties of super high-density olive groves include Arbosana, Arbequina and Koroneiki.

Traditional orchards are averagely considering 400 plants/ha, super high-density olive groves use around 1600-2200 plants/ha (4.0 – 3.5 m x 1.2-1.5 m planting).

Growers can choose manual planting, which delivers good results due to its ability to reduce failure in plants.

Growers can also choose the most advanced mechanical planting, with special machinery that is considered around 50 cents per plant and takes around two hour/ha.

Growers can use their own grape harvesting machinery or hire one just for the limited harvesting period, which will sensibly reduce the yearly cost.

It can be a good reason to split your existing property from vine grapes only to 50-50 vine grape-olive orchards.

The estimate time for harvesting is around two hours/ha.

Growers can expect consistent and constant yields from the third year after planting onwards 4 ton of olives/ha to 12 tons of olives/ha from the 4th-5th year onwards.

This will last for at least 30 years if constant agricultural management is in place.

The quick harvesting process, which is around two hour/ha, together with the direct transport to the local mill, allows the growers to recall the highest quality of extra virgin olive oil.

The ultra quick process from havesting and milling sensibly reduces the risk of rise in fatty acid ethyl esters, peroxides and more generally organoleptic characteristics.

So this may be seen as a potential for an upgrade in price and quality from the growers as well.

The growers can take advantage of the 100 per cent mechanised pruning of the entire orchard.

The initial capital investment in plants is sensibly higher for the super high-density crops.

This initial investment can be easily returned to the grower in the first year considering the much lower costs for management of the process.

It includes low cost for planting, low quantity in water for the irrigation, low cost in fertilizers, low cost for pruning, low cost for harvesting, low cost for the labour.

The growers can sleep easy knowing that they will reach the break-even point after four-to-five years from planting.

The high and constant yields from the fifth year onwards, for at least 30 years, together with the lowest managing cost, make super high-density systems the only profitable and sustainable option for the future.

Back to news