SOVENA
Sovena Group: +351 21 412 93 00
Email : info@sovena.pt

AGRICULTURE

Business areas

AGRICULTURE

Exploration of own or leased olive groves, besides the management of the olive mills. A unique project worldwide, operating in PT, Spain and Morocco and in full expansion to other regions of the world.

Who we are

ELAIA is a project whose main objective is the cultivation of our own olive groves or ones that are leased, as well as the management of oil mills to obtain Premium olive oils. A single project on a worldwide scale due to its dimension, operating in Portugal, Spain and Morocco, and currently undergoing expansion in other regions in the world.

As to date, ELAIA has more than 11,000 hectares of cultivation, Portugal being the most important country, to a great extent due to its advances in the Alqueva project, which has meant a very important development of the irrigated land. The current distribution of the plantations, by country, is as follows:

Countries Hectares  Gross Hectares
Portugal 8.581 10.269
Spain 1.607 1.636
Morocco 1.054 1.332
Total 11.242 13.237

 

 

 

 

 

With the aim to control the whole production process, with the highest levels of quality and guaranteeing the complete traceability of our production, to date we have four modern oil presses in which we transform 100% of our harvest.

 

    Country
Olive Mils Grinding capacity (Tonnes olives/day) Cellar (Tonnes Oil)
Portugal Ferreira do Alentejo (Marmelo) 1.000 4.800
Portugal

Avis (Painho)

800 3.300
Spain

Badajoz (Navalvillar de Pela)

350 990
Morocco Marrakech (Olico) 350 1.500
Total   2.500 10.590

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elaia is to encompass the production and the transformation of the oil and it is based on the idea of integrating the whole value chain, from the cultivation of the olives to the selling of the final product, strengthening its position on the market and promoting the existing industrial and commercial structure.

This means that the investment in terms of upgrading and expanding area of olive groves and innovation in processing the olive oil, demonstrates a clear focus on Mediterranean agriculture and the creation of oils of unique quality. With these projects ELAIA is contributing to the strengthening of its position in the olive sector and to raising the position of Portugal in the world panorama of olive oil.

 

Types of Plantacion

A more in-depth knowledge of the possibilities of olives, together with new agricultural technology, has led to appearance of the so-called "new olive growing culture", and with that, the change of the olive grove plantations. This new technology is based on irrigation as a fundamental system in order to increase and stabilise the production; the varietal selection, which guarantees the homogeneity of the plantations and their quality, and the mechanization of fundamental tasks, like harvesting.

The intensive olive groves have a greater density on the plantation, normally 300 trees per hectare, with modern drip irrigation systems and also with a more rational fertilisation.

Already at the end of the twentieth century, there was a new trend in the olive growing culture, with the appearance of ‘hedgerow’ olive groves. This system has a much greater density and was based on agricultural standards created for vineyards. The density of the plantation varied between 1,200 and 2,000 trees per hectare. Despite it requiring a much greater investment, it allows the production to be started in the fastest possible way, the level of productivity per hectare is greater and harvesting is mechanical, which speeds up the process (olives can be gathered at a speed of 5 hectares per day and per machine) and in addition the need for manual labour is reduced, and as a result, the total expense.

With this new technology even the olive groves benefit, for example, with the appearance of new machinery for harvesting, which is also completely mechanical. As far as the production process is concerned, an olives grove can start its production in the third year after its planting and can reach an annual average production of between 10,000 and 12,000 kg/hectare in the fifth year. In the intensive olive groves production can also be started in the third year, however the productivity per hectare is much lower, average production rates in the region of 8,500 to 10,000 kg/hectare in the seventh or eighth year.

ELAIA uses both systems for many reasons, spanning from the light to the orography of the terrain, taking into account the maximization of the resources that are available in their own agricultural properties.

Production Units:

01

PORTUGAL

This project is growing day by day and already has around 9 ,000 hectares in the regions of Alto Alentejo and Bajo Alentejo in Portugal. The main centres are found in Ferreira do Alentejo, Campo Maior, Elvas, and Avis. The first plantations were created in the summer of 2007 in Elvas and Ferreira and the first harvest was in 2009, in 2012 reaching more than 50 million kilos of olives.

02

SPAIN

The plantations in Spain are currently located in Extremadura, in the region of Vegas Altas, in the province of Badajoz (the plantations in this location were set up between 2007 and 2009) and as of 2014 in ANDALUCIA, in the Cordoba province, which is considered to be the heart of the olive business, as it is the world’s largest producer. The varieties planted range from Arbequina to Arbosana and Oleana. The production of the said plantations is processed in the oil mill that Elaia has in Navalvillar de Pela, which was acquired in 2008 and in which an investment has been made in order to increase both its grinding capacity and its cellar.

03

MOROCCO

Soprolives represents the first initiative of the Sovena Group in the agricultural sector and is exclusively located in Morocco. Its project is still to the date the largest integrated olive grove project in Morocco. It is a project of paramount importance not only to the Group – as it constitutes an important supply platform to the Group’s operation in the USA – but also to the Country itself, as a positive contributor to its balance of trade.

Quality Assurance

 

Quality, Food Safety and Environmental Policy

Whilst pursuing its Mission and Vision, ELAIA LAGAR has established as an important guideline of its strategy, together with the guidelines of the SOVENA GROUP it is part of:

  • To ensure customer satisfaction at all times, fulfilling its needs and expectations
  • To supply products that are safe and meet applicable quality specifications
  • To adopt an environmentally and socially responsible posture

With that purpose, ELAIA LAGAR has defined and implemented a Quality, Food Safety and Environmental Policy, that is sustained in the following principles:

  • To have Quality, Food Safety and the Environment become paramount to the culture of the Group
  • To ensure the strictest fulfillment of the legal requirements, as well as other requirements that the company subscribes at the Quality, Food Safety and Environment level
  • To make available to its customers products and services that promote quality, innovation and differentiation
  • To maintain and develop a relation of partnership with suppliers
  • To minimize the environmental impact of activity, giving priority to pollution-preventing measures and adopting best practices and best technology available
  • To use resources rationally (raw materials, fuel, energy, water), minimize production of waste and its adequate disposal.
  • To promote a teamwork environment, built on professionalism, rigour and innovative spirit
  • To provide training to employees, so that they can develop their potential and skills in order to perform their duties in an effective and responsible manner
  • To foster relations with research institutions and other entities, ensuring the systematic apprehension of new practices in product development and environmental performance.
  • To promote the continuous improvement of the effectiveness of the Quality, Food Safety and Environment systems.
  • To ensure that employees are aware of the fundamental elements of this Policy, and make it available, whenever necessary, to all stakeholders (customers, suppliers, official entities, society in general), promoting adequate communication, both internal and external, with food chain agents.

In order to achieve the mentioned commitment, ELAIA LAGAR establishes annually objectives and goals, disseminating them in the organization and periodically assessing its level of fulfillment.

The board of directors of ELAIA LAGAR, as well as ALL its employees, clearly identify themselves with the mentioned commitments, and commit to act focused on the achievement of the objectives established, thereby emphasizing the importance of this document and all the rules and procedures implicit to it.

The Board of Directors,

Lisbon, June 14, 2016