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Mallorcan Oil - Designation of Origin
Mallorcan Oil is an extra virgin olive oil made with the fruit of the olive tree (Olea Europea), based on physical processes which ensure that the oil conserves the aroma, taste and properties of the fruit from which it is made. The soil characteristics, rugged landscape, irregular rainfall and great age of Mallorca's olive trees lead to a limited yield of olives that are suitable for good quality oil. At the same time, Mallorca's climate influences when it is best to harvest the olives, with an earlier harvest compared to other olive-growing regions. Thanks to all these factors and to the species of olive trees that can be found in Mallorca, the oils produced have different organoleptic properties. There is a sweet type that is made with olives that are beginning to ripen, whose main feature is its sweetness or mildness with almost no bitter or spicy flavour. Alternatively, there is a fruity kind that is made from green olives, whose sensorial properties are strongly characterized by a bitter, spicy quality.
First exportations from Mallorca to Northern Africa in the 13th century
Traditionally Mallorcan olive oil has always been well-acknowledged and popular among the local residents and people from other areas with which Mallorca has had trading links over the years. According to historical data, the Phoenicians and Greeks introduced olive trees to the Iberian Peninsula and from there they reached Mallorca. Historical references indicate that, when the Crown of Aragon existed (in the 13th century), oil was exported from Mallorca to Northern Africa together with other agricultural products. In the mid 15th century Mallorcan oil was a regular, continuous export, particularly from the Port of Soller.
In one of the documents that best reflects customs and life on the island of Mallorca, "Die Baleren in wort und bild geschildert" (1869-1891), written by Archduke Louis Salvator of Austria during his stay on the island in the 19th century, the quality of Mallorcan virgin olive oil is praised for use on salads and for making "pa amb olis" (bread rubbed with tomato and sprinkled with oil), which, according to the Archduke, was one of the island's most popular dishes.