An olive tree is a precious resource and olive oil is an even greater one. The Marche region has always had an enviable reputation for both. In the 13thcentury, the ships from the Marche region that called along the Po river would pay their docking fees in olive oil, which was considered of superior value than that from other regions in Italy. Even the Venetians knew of the value of “l’olio de Marchia”,and it retailed there at ahigher price for its fine aromaand flavour, qualities itstill maintains today.The quality and typicality of the region’s olive oil are the result of a combination of factors: the numerous localvarieties, different from zone to zone, the distinct climate of the Marche region, the traditional growing and harvesting techniques and, last but not least, the well-preserved traditions at the olive presses. The many typical varieties growing in the region are combined with the Frantoio and Leccino olives in differing proportions, bringing forth different characteristics each time.The typical regional olive oil is slightly fruity and hints of grass, green almonds and artichokes. It has a well-balanced flavour with just a touch of bitterness and spice. Among its varieties well worthy of note: the Coroncina, Piantone di Falerone, Piantone di Mogliano, Sargano di Fermo, Orbetana, Mignola, Carboncella, Raggia and Raggiola. These are just some of the varieties which have resulted in mono-varietals with distinct organoleptic characteristics.
OLIVE OIL CITIES
The National Association of “Città dell’Olio” (Olive Oil Cities), founded in 1984, brings together the mountain communities, chambers of commerce, Italian provinces and municipalities with a strong vocation to olive growing, to promote extra-virgin olive oil and its territories of production. The association works to spread the olive and quality olive oil culture, to protect and promote the environment and the olive-growing landscape, to spread the history of olive growing and ensure the consumer through the enhancement of protected designations of origin. The members of the association in the Marche region are 30: the municipalities of Cartoceto, Colbordolo e Fano in the province of Pesaro e Urbino;the municipalities of Ancona, Arcevia, Belvedere Ostrense, Corinaldo, Cupramontana, Jesi, Maiolati Spontini, Monsano, Monte Roberto, Monte San Vito, Montecarotto, Ostra, Ostra Vetere, San Marcello, San Paolo di Jesi, Senigallia, Serra San Quirico, Staffolo in the province of Ancona; the municipality of Falerone, in the province of Fermo and Ripatransone in the province of Ascoli Piceno; moreover, the Province of Ancona, the Province of Macerata, the Chamber of Commerce of Ancona and the Mountain Community of Esino and Frasassi.