Extra Virgin Olive Oil & Olives For You

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Our History

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Bald Hills Olive Grove sits on 33 acres of picturesque agricultural land to the north of Mt Barker on Bald Hills Road.  Our family bought the land in 1986 on a whim; the acres of rolling hills were too enticing to pass up. Initially it grew hay and vegetables, and we still grow some hay. 

Australian olive oil and table fruit is an emerging industry with lots of potential, and friendly people. With our Mediterranean climate, similar to northern Italy, it was exciting to try this new venture.  Although Olives and extra virgin olive oil are part of a healthy diet, Australia wasn’t supplying its own people.  So here was an opportunity to learn and join a whole new industry. 

The land now supports a range of Mediterranean varieties of olive trees.  They were selected because they cope with the winter frosts which we occasionally get in the beautiful Adelaide Hills.

The original trees were planted in 1998 with the help of friends and family.   After some tortuous, hot summers our young trees began to establish themselves, and we were delighted to discover our first berries in 2002. Learning all the time about the different needs of the grove, and overcoming some critical early setbacks, we watched the trees steadily increase their fruit to the point that we could now share this wonderful produce as extra virgin olive oil!

The fruit was initially harvested by hand onto mats, which were dragged along under the trees, despite wet and cold days. 

In 2009 our trees were producing enough fruit to be machine harvested. However, the dedicated few still made sure no olive was left behind; hand picking any trees not accounted for by the machine harvester. At times we join with other olive growers to harvest and combine the fruit from our groves to make versatile, complex, and tasty olive flavours and products.

 
 

In 2010 100 twelve year old Pendolino trees were transplanted from the neighbouring property, when a grey water dam was installed.

Three years later they bore their first crop of fruit in their new home.

 

The picked fruit is loaded into crates then taken to the olive press to be processed into extra virgin olive oil. The olives are washed, crushed and then mixed with water and slowly stirred to release the oil. This oil is separated from the water and solid olive pulp, and then poured into containers for bottling and labelling.

 

In 2015 we installed a cooled insulated container to keep the oil on the property rather than in the Cold Store 20 minutes away.  It saves time and fuel to just go down the hill to the big blue box!

 

 

We are proud to know that our extra virgin olive oil is adding to our customers' health while they enjoy the wonderfully grassy and slightly peppery flavour. Olives and extra virgin olive oil are part of a healthy Mediterranean diet, assisting in overcoming high cholesterol and cardiovascular disease.