The Ministry of Agriculture has set a date for olive harvest in each governorate according to its climate, explaining that the date for this season is early compared to previous seasons due to climatic conditions and low production.
The harvest will begin on the 25th of September in Tartous, on the first of October in Lattakia, on the tenth of it in Homs, in the middle of the same month in Aleppo, Hama, al-Ghab, Raqqa and Hasaka, on the twentieth of it in Daraa, Sweida and Quneitra, on the twenty-fifth of it in the countryside of Damascus, and on the first of next November in Idlib.
The Director of the Olive Office, Eng. Abeer Jawhar, told SANA delegate that the opening date of the mills in the governorates will be a week before the harvest date to complete the maintenance and experimentation operations well.
Jawhar called on olive growers to pay attention to choosing the appropriate date for harvest, which is determined according to the olive variety, the density of the crop on trees, climatic conditions, the geographical location of the orchard, its environmental conditions, soil type, the target oil quality, and irrigation management.
The director of the olive office explained that it is possible to estimate the maturity of the fruits and enter the harvest when they turn about 60 percent of the fruits, which is the period during which the best quantity of oil and the highest quality can be obtained.
As for the good harvest conditions to preserve the safety of the fruits, Jawhar indicated that they start by choosing the appropriate method for harvesting to reduce the mechanical damage that causes bruises and deformation of the fruits and not to mix the fruits falling on the ground of low quality with those picked from trees and packing the fruits with plastic boxes, not the burlap or plastic bags that cause the accumulation of fruits Increasing the rate of respiration leads to an increase in the temperature inside the bags and it becomes a suitable medium for the growth of molds, fungi and yeasts that secrete enzymes that cause the decomposition of the oil and an increase in the percentage of acid, and consequently the low level of quality and spoilage of the oil faster, in addition to its significant impact on the taste and sensory properties as a result of the appearance of many negative flavors .
The Director of the Olive Office stressed the importance of expediting as much as possible in squeezing the fruits after harvest so that the period does not exceed 48 hours to preserve the integrity of the fruits and thus the quality of the oil and to choose the press that applies the appropriate, correct and healthy conditions to obtain high-quality olive oil.