Olives are fruit, like cherries, and therefore need care and attention to ensure their well-being at all stages of their growth and transformation. This means protection from the attack of parasites. One of these is the aptly named olive fruit fly and the fight against it is continuous, intense and never-ending. The fly lays its eggs within the fruits. Once the larvae have hatched, they feed on the pulp of the drupe. This irreversibly degrades the olive and subsequently the oil that is made from it.
This defect can be tasted on the palate. Oils damaged by flies are more fatty and do not have the fresh vegetable touches that are typical of quality oils.
Quality producers stay well clear of these kinds of mistakes. Every step in their production line is subject to specific protocols. The timeframe is fundamental. Once olives are harvested they are put in well-ventilated boxes before being immediately transported to the olive-press to be turned into oil.
Nicola di Noia, taken from “Il Raccolto dei Racconti”