According to a local farmer, Kalamata saw a 50% drop in olive production as a result of climate change.
Greece, the world’s third largest olive oil producer, is facing threats to the country’s prized export due to climate change.
“We’re witnessing phenomena and problems that we did not see 20 years ago,” olive farmer Michalis Antonopoulos explained.
The farmer grows crops in Kalamata in Greece, a region that is well-known for its olives.
However, Antonopoulos says global warming is posing challenges to his livelihood and hurting production of Kalamata’s regional delicacy.
Low rainfall, high temperatures and heat waves caused by Climate shiftsThis year’s harvest was damaged, and the hot weather created wildfires that scorched hundreds of trees.
Antonopoulos, the head of the cooperative of olive growers in the area, estimates that there was a 50% drop off in production due to climate change.
“This year has shown us that the tree cannot cope under difficult weather conditions,” the farmer said, adding “This is a classic example of The environmental impact we’re going through.”
“The climate crisis devastates everything.”
Though Greece’s 2020 harvest produced over 300,000 tons of olive oil, this year the European Union lowered its forecast for the country to just over 250,000 tons.
According to the European Commission, the output of olive oil in Greece will continue falling due to climate change.