27 October 2020 we got the keys of the farm at the notary after a crowdfunding to be able to purchase the land (read our very first article about it here), 2 years at the farm later and the vision is becoming reality! There is so much to update you on, but first we have something very tasty to share with you!
This summer has been the hottest we have ever experienced, with temperatures above 30 degrees from May until October without any rain. Not only for our quality of life it was challenging, but also for the baby trees we planted. It was so hot that the olive trees did not produce any olives, we think that the flowers got burnt by the sun before the pollination could take place. That means that the only crop we have brought to the market so far fell completely away, just like our 200 apricot trees that did not produce because of a very late frost. Farming is fragile, nature is unpredictable, and it's only going to be harder with more extreme weather conditions. Time for climate action, improving our resilience drastically!
But this farming year also brought us our very first almonds! After a bad almond year last year, we have been able to harvest quite some almonds from the farm ourselves! With our dear friends Gavin & Alessandro and Maria we started harvesting the almonds by hand. This is a similar process as with Olives where you gather the almonds on a net below the tree after hitting them out the branches. The process to prepare the almonds so that they are edible, is actually quite labor intensive and time consuming. The almond we know, is not considered a nut but a seed. When the almond is on the tree, it is protected by 2 layers, and both those layers need to be removed after the almond is dried in the sun (protecting it from rats, wild boar and rain). The inner layer of the 2 is a very hard layer, and it requires a machine to crack, if you don't want to crack almonds 1 by 1;) After a long search we bought this machine 2nd hand together with our friend Jordi from the village to make our lives easier. After cracking, we still need to separate the almond from the broken shells, all by hand.. The final result is incredible, even more so after all this hard work! The almonds might not be perfect with such a dry summer, but they are grown, harvested and packaged with love! As we are a relative small farm, with 'only' 400 almond trees, our production is limited and we are still processing batches.
To make up for our missing olive oil, for those who can not miss the pure and real olive oil in their kitchens anymore, we are collaborating with a local organic farmer who lets animals graze on his olive fields from time to time. His olive oil is natural & organic, cold pressed and very tasty. So this year you are not just supporting our project with delicious olive oil, but 2 small-scale farmers.
Find out more about the Almonds & Olive Oil on our product page, there are also packages available for the festive season! By buying our products, you are supporting the regeneration of 15ha degraded farmland, educational activities and the overall food transition to be positive for all life on earth! What is a better gift than that?!