More than 25 tonnes of olive tree wood was cut dowr in Margie Carter’s olive grove, making the prized wood available to wood carvers in the area.

Ms Carter said the trees, although they are planted 3m apart, were suffering due to lack of sunlight because of their overgrown branches and intertwining limbs.

“There was some doubt that the trees would come back and flourish because we really did cut them right back,” she said, “but they are sprouting everywhere and are sure to start producing olives again in the future. ”

The olive wood retails for $4 to $4.50 a kilogram and Ms Carter is hoping to sell it for turning or carving and she says it looks beautiful when polished.

Having recently been to Spain and Italy to tour their olive growing and oil making sites, she said the Spanish cut their trees back to the stump every 30 or 40 years.

“Having been to the biggest olive growing countries in the world I can quite honestly say I would rather use Australia’s olive oils then theirs.

“Australia’s olive growing industry is not fettered by traditions and has the best technology and cleanest oil making facilities I have seen,” Ms Carter said.

“We clean and press our olives in a much more. sophisticated way and we have the potential to become a great olive oil making country. ”

Olive Growers’ AGM

The Australian Olive Growers Association will hold its Annual General Meeting in Albury from October 16th – 19th.

Included in the program are updates on the effects salinity, DNA testing and world trends have on the Australian olive growers.

The meeting commences at lOam on the 16th. For more information contact Greg Seymour (CEO) 0476760160.