2 January 2014

An Olive Grove in Malta

Godfrey Bezzina (left), director of BSS Ltd., explains the
process to Maltese Minister for Agriculture, Roderick Galdes
Olive Oil Times 28/12/2013:  The small Mediterranean country is a perfect holiday destination, but on its land also grow fruitful olive trees.

Set in the Mediterranean Sea between Sicily and Northern Africa, the island of Malta — actually an archipelago made of three larger inhabited islands, Malta, Gozo and Comino, and many smaller islands — is a popular tourist destination with its warm climate, sandy beaches and historical monuments.

But Malta, whose civilizations’ origins date back to the Stone Age, is also a fertile ground for vineyards and olive groves.

Olive growing was introduced to the Maltese Islands in ancient times: some olive trees found here date back to more than 1,000 years ago. The subtropical Mediterranean climate and the alkaline soil are both ideal for olive cultivation, which once flourished on these islands under the Phoenicians and the Romans, as many of the local place names still witness. Later on, it was replaced first with cotton production by the Arabs, then with sheep breeding by the British rulers and at last...read on.