Belser are immersed in a sea of over 60 million olive trees.
Plains, valleys and mountains enveloped in endless rows of olive trees, lined up as perfectly as soldiers on parade. This living tapestry covers the province with silvery leaves, and at the end of the year, fills it with liquid gold. A unique landscape which identifies Jaén, the face it presents to locals and visitors alike.
Because few visitors can fail to be impressed when they cross the invisible frontier of the province of Jaén and find themselves in a sea of more than 60 million olive trees, whic hcover the countryside and stretch as faras the eye can see.
The largest man-madeforest in Europe and the only one of its kind in the world, tended by generations of men and women of Jaén over centuries. Olive groves and olive oil are part of the unique personality of this Spanish province and its people. An aspect which is so integrated in daily life that sometimes it is hard to discern the immense value itrepresents. From the earliest times, the economy of Jaén has depended on the cultivation of olive groves, the source of wealth for its communities and cultures over the ages.
Thousands of years of culture. Over the centuries, the cultivation of olive trees and the extraction of olive oil have created a set of practices, customs and beliefs that mark the character and way of life of the people of Jaén.
We can go back as far as the Ibero-Roman city of Castulo to find some of these early rituals relating to the olive harvest. It is easy to see how Jaén, its history, peoples and culture, have always been closely linked with the olive grove and olive oil. The culture of the olive grove is an intrinsic part of the Mediterranean peoples, and inJaén has historic, economic, anthropological, architectural and intangible dimensions that define the very roots of the identity of this Andalusian province.
Apart from the agricultural aspect, food, health, and tourism are a few of the sectors where olive oil takes centre stage, in a territory which knows better than any its flavours and nuances, properties and qualities. A province which, as well as being the world’s largest producer, is committed to quality andinnovation in the olive oil industry.