The olive harvest at Lago di Garda taught us some interesting things.
It took a 40 h week and (on average) three people to hand-pick-harvest 60 old olive trees. The trees have witnessed a few centuries. For an olive farmer to make even just a tiny profit (from chemical-free trees), one litre of olive oil would have to cost at least 40 €. What one usually buys in supermarkets for 3 € is probably not olive oil. It is impossible to produce this amount for that price.
The most important thing in a harvest is people who climb the tiny but high ladders. Fruit pickers have to climb up a few metres to reach the highest branches. There also have to be people on the ground who manage the nets and the falling olives to fall correctly and hand-pick olives from the lower branches.
This year, the harvest has been more fruitful than any other harvest in the last decade. The harvest extracts were 180 litres of oil whereas in other years, it’s regularly been around 100 litres. The taste of this pure oil is mild and ‚kind‘. Unlike olives from other regions and different kinds of trees it doesn’t create a bitter taste in the throat.
Surrounded by healthy and organic food, the garden bears fruit even in winter. A garden is, although it requires such great care and physical work, a luxury. One can be sure of what is on his plate. And – there’s a certain flower you can eat – a natural antibiotic named nasturtium (Kapuzinerkresse).