Gourmet Olive Day: Reasons To Consume European Olives

Have An Olive Day, Every Day, Encourages Chef José Andrés

Whole, pitted, sliced, or stuffed with pepper, any way you enjoy them, European olives are essential to Mediterranean cuisine and cooking. With thousands of textures, flavors, and ways to enjoy them every day, when you put olives at your table, you are choosing a product with more than 2,000 years of European tradition. Renowned chef José Andrés has declared himself a lover of these olives, in their many forms, and has celebrated their delicious diversity at his Washington, DC restaurant Jaleo, where he has shared with attendees how to “have an olive day” with tasty messages and tips.

The gathering has been promoted by the Interprofessional Organization of Table Olives (INTERACEITUNA), in collaboration with the European Union, entities that have invited food lovers to bring “Put Europe at your table. Have an Olive Day with Olives from Spain” to raise awareness of olives in American gastronomy. The information campaign on this foodstuff of European origin has also included promotional activities at the Mercado Little Spain in New York.

The U.S. is the main market for olives produced in European Union, importing more than 293 million pounds in 2020, representing a value of more than $427 million dollars. More than 79% of the olives that Americans consumed that year came from countries integrated into the European Union. In fact, Spain, the country where chef José Andrés is from, is the world leader in both the production and export of table olives, with 20% of international production and 28% of global exports.

“You can discover the world through food.  Something so small as an olive can turn your day into a better one,” says José Andrés. “I mean, are you a person who thinks all olives are the same? Today, try manzanilla, tomorrow hojiblanca, the next day queen olives. Spicy, meaty, tangy. It’s the variety, the spice of life”.

Due to its great versatility in the kitchen, European table olives can easily be integrated into infinite preparations, from savory breads and salads to main dishes, even enhancing sweet snacks like cookies and cakes, there is a wealth of ways to bring olives to your table with both classic and creative recipes.


“Put Europe at your table. Have an Olive Day with Olives from Spain” was created to increase knowledge about the benefits of agricultural products; to inform about the benefits of consuming olives; and to increase awareness for European olives in a market as important as the United States where consumers seek more detailed information about nutrition, production and sustainability.

European olives could also be found at the Summer Fancy Food Show 2022, the largest show in the USA dedicated exclusively to specialty foods and beverages, and Mercado Little Spain in New York, with a Pop-Up Bar where could taste about the numerous and delicious varieties of “Olives from Spain”.