Weekly Product Updates

W5 Olive and Olive Oil Update: Spain's Olive Oil Prices Surged 68% YoY in mid-Jan-24, Impacting Global Markets

Olive Oil
Published Feb 7, 2024

Spain's Olive Oil Price Surged 68% YoY in Mid-Jan-24

Following a brief period of relief, olive oil prices in Spain surged to new heights, both at origin and in supermarkets. In mid-Jan-24, extra virgin olive oil prices reached USD 9.66 per kilogram (kg), marking a 68% increase year-on-year (YoY). Prices for virgin and lampante olive oil also experienced record highs. This spike comes after a three-month decline in prices at origin due to fresh batches of olive oil entering the market during the harvest. Concerns about below-expectation olive oil production in Spain for the 2023/24 crop year, coupled with consumer reluctance to shift away from the category and moderate winter rainfall, have contributed to the renewed escalation of prices at origin. Supermarkets witnessed a 69% YoY increase in the average extra virgin olive oil price, rising from USD 7.43/kg in early 2023 to USD 12.90/kg in Jan-24.

Reassessing Spain's Olive Oil Production Estimates for 2023/24

Spain's Cooperativas Agro-alimentarias estimated that olive oil production would rise to 755 thousand mt by the end of the 2023/24 harvest season. Despite the promising forecast, some experts doubt production will reach that level due to unexpectedly low oil yields from crushed olives. Moreover, experts estimate Spain's olive oil production to reach approximately 680 thousand mt to 710 thousand mt at best.

Morocco's 2022/23 Olive Export Crisis and Decade-Low Drop

During the 2022/23 campaign, Morocco faced a significant decline in the export of canned olives, experiencing one of its worst seasons in a decade with a nearly one-third drop in exports. Simultaneously, imports of canned olives surged to record levels. Moroccan exporters witnessed a collapse in sales, reaching only 82 thousand mt, a substantial decrease from the previous season and close to the lowest level in ten years. The Mediterranean olive crisis prompted Morocco to ban olive oil exports in the fall of 2023 to stabilize domestic prices. In addition to the export decline, the country saw an unprecedented increase in canned olive imports, reaching 3 thousand mt during the same campaign, an 11-fold rise from the previous year. Despite being the fourth-largest global olive producer in 2022, Morocco mainly exports canned olives, with the European Union (EU) and North America comprising 90% of its total exports in the 2022/23 campaign. Notably, Egypt emerged as the primary supplier of canned olives to Morocco during this period, alongside France, the United States (US), Belgium, Spain, and Italy as key importers.

Market Readjustment for Olive Oil Prices in Greece and Consumer Response

In Greece, the olive oil market has stabilized around USD 10.21/kg in Laconia in W5, with some exceptions, such as the USD 10.11/kg achieved by the Paleopanagia Agricultural Cooperative about a month ago. Prices for the three production lines in Messinia and Crete vary between USD 9.35 and 9.99/kg. Over the past two months, the market experienced a rapid increase, covering the distance from previous highs and establishing new ones. The market is now readjusting to assess how consumption will respond to these new price levels. Limited availability was a key factor preventing prices from reaching new record highs.

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