Olives have been grown in the north state for more than 100 years, and that tradition has extended into an expanding olive oil industry. As new farming techniques are added - such as the hedge model in which olive trees are planted close together, making harvesting much easier - area farmers and oil makers can experiment with flavors. Here is a sampling of some of the olive oils produced in the north state. Some are available in area stores, and all are available at the olive oil makers' Web sites.
Apollo Olive Oil started with 900 bottles in 2001 - and a gold medal at the Los Angeles County International olive Oil Competition. Its oil has gone on to receive other gold medals and awards at other competitions. Apollo olive oils are grown and milled with chemical-free practices. Apollo says it uses the only mill in the nation designed to mill olive oil in a vacuum, thereby protecting against oxidation.
More information: apollooliveoil.com, (530) 692-2314.
Address: P.O.Box: 1054, Oregon House, CA 95962
Established in 1998, California Olive Ranch is the largest grower and producer of certified California extra virgin olive oil in North America, producing 40 percent of the extra virgin olive oil made in California. California Olive Ranch uses the high-density system of olive cultivation, which it pioneered. Its products are found in many Redding-area stores and are available at www.californiaoliveranch.com.
For more information: www.californiaoliveranch.com, (916) 239-2999
Address: 2675 Lone Tree Road, Oroville, CA 95965
Lodestar in Oroville has been making olive oil from late harvest Mission Olives it grows since 1993. Its orchards are more than 100 years old. For its lemon olive oils, Lodestar uses fresh lemons from a grower in Santa Barbara. The lemons are crushed with the olives to blend the flavors. Its oils are available at www.lodestarfarms.com.
For more information: www.lodestarfarms.com, 530-534-6548
Address: 3719 Foothill Blvd., Oroville, CA 95966
Lucero Olive Oil, LLC started in 2004. It was the result of four generations of farming and producing olives in Corning. Its products are available throughout California and on its Web site, lucerooliveoil.com.
Pacific Sun is produced by Pacific Farms and Orchards Inc. of Gerber. Pacific Farms is a woman-owned, family run, sustainable agricultural operation. Produced from select Northern California olives taken from the field and milled immediately, Pacific Sun Extra Virgin Olive Oil is additive-free.
More information: www.pacificsunoliveoil.com, 530-385-1475.
Tehama Gold has been made since 1965 out of Flournoy. Tehama Gold is made with no additives. It is cold processed and unfiltered.
More information: www.tehamagold.com, 530-833-0119
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