Olives are one of those wonders of nature that are easy to take for granted… yet deserve special attention.
Technically a fruit, olives belong to the group of "drupes," which are fruits with a pit or stone. Other popular drupes include peaches, mangos, cherries, plums, nectarines, almonds and pistachios.
There are hundreds of varieties of olive trees, but all of them belong in the same scientific category of Olea europea. "Olea" is the Latin word for "oil" and reflects the high oil content of this food.
Olive trees are native to the Mediterranean as well as different parts of Asia and Africa. These trees are remarkable in their own right… as they tend to live for hundreds of years or more.
Olives have been cultivated in parts of the Mediterranean, including Crete and Syria, for at least 5,000 years. In addition, there is carbon-dating evidence of olive tree presence in Spain from 6,000 to 8,000 years ago.
A carbon-dated world record for a living olive tree stands at an incredible 2,000 years!
In the U.S., five olive varieties make up the majority of the market share: Manzanillo, Sevillano, Mission, Ascolano and Barouni. These are grown primarily in California.
Mediterranean olive varieties include: Cipresino and Trantoio (Italy), Bical and Lemono (Spain), Adriamitini and Kalamata (Greece).
Unfortunately, not all olives are created equal and offer you optimal savory taste.
We want to help you take the guesswork out of finding the finest quality olives and top-notch foods made from olives to enhance your culinary experience at home, and it all starts with…
The Farm as a Living Organism
Certainly, Certified Organic is a minimum requirement we insist on for any olives and olive-based foods you may choose.
However, there’s another certification that elevates the standards on sustainable, regenerative agriculture and pushes the envelope on growing nutritious, flavorful food.
Just because a plant is organic doesn’t guarantee it is high quality. If the soil lacks important nutrients, the plant will lack nutrients.
For nutritious plants, you need good topsoil. And to build good nutrient-rich topsoil, we believe the best possible way to go is to follow regenerative farming methods.
A step above organic, Demeter Certified Biodynamic® farming utilizes regenerative farming methods with a spiritual-ethical-ecological approach.
The biodynamic concept views a farm as a living organism. It’s self-contained, self-sustaining, and follows the cycles of nature. The farm creates its vitality and well-being out of its own dynamics.
So how did this concept come about?
How the Founder of Waldorf Education Revolutionized the Traditional Farming Industry
Back in the 1920s, Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Waldorf education, and someone regarded as a very wise man, was approached by a group of farmers alarmed at what was happening on their farms.
Their seeds weren’t germinating... Their food wasn’t as tasty... Even their animals weren’t as healthy. They were beginning to notice the effects of industrialized agriculture with its repurposed nitrogen fertilizer and synthetic pesticides.
Steiner’s sage advice? Stop viewing farms as factories and instead, see them as the living organisms they truly are!
A group of German farmers who followed Steiner’s teachings wanted to make his concept of “biodynamic” farming an agricultural standard. Demeter was formed in 1928.
The world’s oldest ecological certification organization, Demeter sets the standards for biodynamic just like the National Organic Program (NOP) sets organic standards.
Demeter is well known within Central Europe. In fact, a full 10 percent of German organic farmland is Demeter Certified Biodynamic®.
However, the U.S. has been slower to catch on.
The wine industry was the first to take note. U.S. winemakers observed that the finest wines in the world were coming from biodynamic vineyards. This led them to adopt biodynamic practices on their own land.
So, how does Demeter’s BiodynamicÒ certification differ from Certified Organic?
Demeter Certified Biodynamic® agriculture is a step up from organic standards in that it considers the entire farm instead of individual crops and products. And it requires the use of holistic regenerative farming practices to promote the health of the soil, crops and livestock.
Biodynamic® farmers strive to build a diverse and balanced ecosystem within their farm to enhance the quality and nutrition of the food being grown with a heavy focus on sustainability.
Certified Biodynamic® and Traditional Certified Organic: What's the Difference?
Let’s take a closer look at how Certified Biodynamic® compares to NOP’s Certified Organic standards…
|Allows imported organic fertilizers
||Reduces imported materials by utilizing nutrient-rich humus created within the farming system
|Allows imported organic pesticides
||Creation of biologically diverse habitat encourages balanced predator prey relationships
|Does not require the use of livestock
||Integrates livestock to improve soils
|Does not address the rotation of crops
||Promotes crop rotation and makes intensive use of cover crops (green manure) to add nutrients to the soil
|Organic feed for livestock can come from anywhere in the world
||50% of livestock feed must be grown on the farm
|No requirement for biodiversity
||10% of total farm acreage must be set aside for biodiversity
|Focused on crops and allows only one section of a farm to be certified
||Focused on farms and requires that the whole farm be certified
|Product certification focuses mainly on ingredients used
||Product certification uses 12 biodynamic processing standards so the agricultural ingredients used define the product
It’s important to note that many organic farmers recognize the importance of caring for their soil and may already be practicing some of the biodynamic methods – thereby exceeding the organic standards.
And certainly, Certified Organic is still a very high-quality standard out there, while Certified Biodynamic® is quite simply a step up to an even higher standard.
If a farm is Demeter certified, it means that it has also met the organic standard, even if it isn’t certified organic!
Certified Demeter Biodynamic® is as good as it gets in agriculture – it’s the platinum standard for high-quality, nutrient dense food.
Based on the importance of whenever possible to strive for this higher standard, we’d like to introduce you to our delicious olives and a tapenade produced from Demeter Certified Biodynamic® orchards and farms.
Introducing Our Solspring® Kalamata Olives and Olive Tapenade
Exclusively produced on small biodynamic orchards and farms in Greece, we’re excited to bring you our Solspring® brand of olives and tapenade:
- Solspring® Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Pitted Olives:
Grown and cultivated on small family orchards in the mountainous regions of Messinia and Laconia in southern Greece, our Kalamata Pitted Olives benefit from regenerative farming practices. These biodynamic practices create self-sustainable systems within the farm that yield rich and firm olives bursting with flavor, perfect for salads, pizza or simply savored alone as a delightful snack.
- Solspring® Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Olive Tapenade:
Using only the finest Kalamata olives from southern Greece, our Kalamata Olive Tapenade is produced on small biodynamic orchards and farms. By blending special amounts of organic Kalamata olives, red wine vinegar, garlic, extra virgin olive oil and oregano, our Olive Tapenade has a delightfully zesty taste that’s irresistible as a spread or used in your favorite salad or pasta.
How Our Solspring® Kalamata Pitted Olives Stand Apart
When it came down to selecting the highest quality olives from biodynamic regenerative orchards to offer you the best of the best, the choice was clear to us.
Authentic Kalamata olives come from Kalamon olive trees in southern Greece and get their name from Kalamata, their city of origin.
European Union (EU) law provides Kalamata olives with Protected Geographical Status and Protected Designation of Origin and does not allow product labeling as "Kalamata" unless the olives have come from this specific area.
However, outside of the European Union countries, there are not any binding legal standards for labeling of Kalamata olives.
For example, in the U.S., many canned and jarred olives are referred to as "Kalamata-style" or "Kalamata-type" olives. These olives are not authentic Kalamata olives grown in the Kalamata area of southern Greece.
So when it came down to decision time to provide you the best product, only authentic Kalamata olives would do for our Solspring® Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Pitted Olives.
Our Demeter Certified supplier (ISO 22000 and Demeter Biodynamic™) of this extraordinary product goes to great lengths to ensure the highest quality Kalamata olives by how they…
- Take extra care not to collect damaged olives.
- Make sure the storage tanks are clean.
- Perform extensive quality checks of products after harvest.
- Take samples throughout the process to analyze quality.
- Perform regular pesticide analyses using reputable European laboratories.
- Bring production quantities to their own warehouse within three to four months after the harvest to help ensure the highest quality control standards.
- Monitor salt content, pH and acidity of olives at regular intervals throughout the fermentation process to help ensure the highest olive quality.
Produced on small biodynamic Greek farms, our Biodynamic® Kalamata Pitted Olives are enjoyable when added to salads, pizza or simply savored alone as a scrumptious healthy snack.
Why Our Olive Tapenade is in a League by Itself
When creating a delicious tapenade spread, our supplier starts with the same quality Kalamata Greek Olives.
A good-tasting, high-quality tapenade spread certainly starts with the olives, but there are other key ingredients that make our Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Olive Tapenade stand apart from the rest.
Over and above the Kalamata olives found in our Biodynamic® Kalamata Olive Tapenade, here are the four additional biodynamic and organic main ingredients that add to the outstanding flavor and texture:
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil – Adds a fresh and flavorful hint of olive oil
- Red Wine Vinegar – Provides a trace of flavorful wine vinegar
- Garlic – Helps to heighten the overall tapenade flavor
- Oregano – Adds a cool essence and savory flavor
Using only the finest Kalamata olives from southern Greece, our Biodynamic® Kalamata Olive Tapenade helps you create irresistible snacks when spread on French bread, crackers or added to sandwiches. It’s also enjoyable when tossed into your favorite salad or pasta.
Order Our Biodynamic® Olives and Tapenade Today, and Enjoy an Extraordinary Culinary Experience!
Of course, you can find Kalamata-type olives and overly-processed tapenades just about anywhere online today, or even at your local grocery store.
But we seriously doubt you’ll find any of these mass-produced olives and tapenades up to the high-quality standards we’ve insisted on with our Solspring® Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Pitted Olives and Solspring® Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Olive Tapenade.
We strongly believe biodynamic is the wave of the future and exactly what’s needed to ensure that our soils can continue to support agriculture and feed the world.
Treat yourself and your family to a truly extraordinary culinary experience today, and order our Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Pitted Olives and Biodynamic® Organic Kalamata Olive Tapenade!